M: I found Mexican design a bit confused, like it almost has an identity crisis, how can this be possible if the culture is really strong, and the history of Mexico is one of the oldest on the planet?
J: I wouldn’t say that “Mexican" culture is one of the oldest on the planet. There were Olmecs and Toltecs in what is now the Mexican territory, but that doesn’t mean that contemporary Mexicans are being influenced by those cultures directly. We are influenced by the idea of them, the same way you are influenced by a piece of artwork that a previous tenant left in your apartment, that you idealize because it’s a pretty cool piece of art, but you are not sure what it means, so you create an idea around it. In the end, we are living in a constant identity crisis since we started calling ourselves Mexicans and that shows not only in design, but also in other cultural manifestations like music, literature and art (even in soccer!). And that constant search for meaning is in part what makes the Mexican culture so strong. Strong as brute force, that gets out of control and can be destructive.