Local interior and exterior design firm Moonk and Figus easily cross between public and private design. Founder Mauricio Moggia believes the key to successful design is all about the people involved. One of the firm’s latest projects, Casa Triangulo, is a prime example of how a challenging space can be transformed via the power of collaboration and creativity. Alongside Moggia’s skills with colour, space and texture is his unquenchable desire for deeper connections. He is the consummate people person, always seeking ways to understand his clients on a level that allows him to create the beautiful homes in which they live.
Casa Triangulo possesses a singular vision unlike any other on the island. Located in the exclusive Es Cubells neighbourhood on Ibiza’s south coast, the villa’s companions are no slouches. Yet Casa Triangulo sets itself apart. “It’s very experimental,” says Moggia. “There is not a single square angle. It was wonderfully challenging.” True to its name, Casa Triangulo is comprised entirely of triangles. Conceived by local architecture firm MC & AG, the villa design aimed to create a dialogue between triangles; Pythagoras’ theorem writ in stone. The results, when combined with the interior design by Moonk and Figus, is positively mind-blowing.
MC & AG recommended the owners engage Moonk and Figus as their interior designer and so the collaboration began very early on. “I was working off the plans initially,” says Moggia. “The architects had created something really amazing but from an interior design perspective, it was also really challenging.” The various angular shapes informed Moggia’s creative exploration, as did two pieces of art the owners already knew would feature in the house. “The panels had been part of a mural. The owners were very fond of them. It was a connection to their shared history, so it was important for me to incorporate that creatively,” he explains. “They needed to be central to the design.”
Moggia knew the art and the outstanding views would take centre stage as well as the unusually shaped rooms. The dimensions range from super high ceilings and wide angles to the tiny point of a triangle. “It wasn’t hard to find the style,” he says. “Because the house already had its own style. What was hard was bringing balance to these dimensions. I had to find a way to bring normality into what were essentially abnormal spaces.” After all, beyond the architectural beauty, the villa needed to function as a home. Enter Moonk and Figus. “The key was not to be antagonistic to the shapes or to the sharpness but to find balance and harmony.”
Starting from the proviso that the architecture and the views were to be embraced and enjoyed, Moonk and Figus began to play with volume, height and eye-lines. The salon is arranged around an oversized sofa. “It’s an island,” Moggia says of the multi-piece lounge. “Or more like an archipelago.” The design allows multiple viewpoints – of the art, the view and the entertainment system – providing a multidimensional experience while also creating a comfortable spot, a softening amongst the angles. This is the place for conviviality, where the owners, their friends and family can feel relaxed even though they are living in a work of art.
Lighting is always an essential part of any interior space and Casa Triangulo provides myriad opportunities to create texture and complement the pointed shapes. “I chose an Issey Miyake floor lamp because it created a discourse between the room and the height of the ceiling,” explains Moggia. Another wall lamp appears to be part of the architecture but was actually one of Moonk and Figus’ best finds. “It gives off a beautiful tone and it fits so well with the shapes around it.” Tall sculptures in dark charcoal tones placed judiciously around the various common rooms flatter the heights while also accentuating the brightness of the space.
“The house is cantilevered over the property,” says Moggia. “It looks like it’s flying into the view.” Seeking to repeat this motif, Moggia chose a dining table sitting on glass legs making it appear to float. “It’s suspended but because of the dark table top it also feels very solid.” He surrounded the table in darkly upholstered dining chairs; every third one in a lovely deep grape colour. A brightly coloured woven rug sits between the dining area and kitchen, reflecting the colours in the art and adding a touch of joyful Moonk and Figus style humour to the space.
“This house has a sense of zero gravity,” says Moggia. “Everything is suspended, even our belief. But at the same time, there has to be a place where you put your feet on the ground. It was such a beautiful space to design but I was aware always that humans live here.” It could be said that Casa Triangulo came pre-installed with a strong personality. It was Moonk and Figus’ job not to tame it but to embrace its idiosyncratic nature, to find ways of promoting it while also creating a comfortable home. While the architects sought to create a dialogue between triangles, Moggia’s goal was to create a conversation between their vision and the people that inhabit it.
The process of designing private homes creates a special connection between designer and client. “In this work, I collect friends,” says Moggia. “You get to know each other so well because we’re working with the very essence of how people live. It’s the part I love most about my job.” The venerated textile designer William Morris once said that all rooms should have “a friendly welcome ready for the incomer.” When it comes to a Moonk and Figus design, that friendly welcome starts well before the creation of the room; it starts with the very first meeting between designer and client.