Interview with Raquel Oliva, creator of the Sahara collection of ultralight stone lamps

We interviewed Raquel Oliva, Vice President of Oliva Iluminación, a reference company in lighting with more than 75 years of history that collaborates with the best designers and architects in the country to realize luxury spaces.

With a degree in International Business from the University of Richmond and an Interior Design Master, Raquel Oliva joined the family business in 1997 after finishing her studies. She held various positions of responsibility until she became the company’s vice president in 2011. From this position, she started Oliva Iluminación’s Project Department, initiated the company’s digitalization process and promoted its internationalization in more than 40 countries, and was elected last year as one of the Top 100 Women Leaders 2019.

Raquel Oliva combines her position at Oliva Iluminación with that of Patron of Honor of the Foundation El Sueño de Vicky, which promotes research into childhood cancer as well as ambassador of the platform Elite Spain and the firms Anna Cortina and La Prairie.

Today we interviewed her to talk about Sahara, the magnificent collection of lamps she has just launched, in which TINO has participated by providing the natural stone Stonesize backlight.

+ How was the collection ‘Sahara’ developed? Why does it have this name? What was your inspiration?

The collection is inspired by my travels, especially the warm sunsets I’ve experienced in different parts of the world, whose light has given me peace and inspiration.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ When you talk about your creative process, you often mention your experiences in the Mediterranean Sea. How is this reflected in your designs?

For me, the Mediterranean Sea is a source of energy and peace. The sunlight reflected on the water creates magical blue and crystalline tones that make us feel in a unique place. I try to convey that feeling to my designs, which stand out for their warmth.

+ You also give a lot of importance to the artisan component of your creations. Why?

Handcrafted creations are unique. There are no two pieces alike. Besides, a handmade product is made by rescuing and maintaining traditional creation techniques that escape from advanced technology. It is a manual process. All my lamps are created one by one, with dedication and care. That’s why they are exclusive.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ What does natural stone contribute to your lamps?

Tino’s natural stone brings exclusivity since, as I mentioned before, no two pieces are the same. Also, it brings the natural simplicity and energy of stone itself.

+ What kind of stones are you using in the collection? Why?

Different types of TINO Natural Stone marble are being used in the collection because of their elegance. The light that is projected through these stones, as they are illuminated, is exactly what I wanted to reflect in each design.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ What other materials are you combining with marble?

We are combining it with virgin wool and alpaca.

+ Are the lamps customizable?

Yes, we have created a capsule collection, but the client can personalize them by exchanging both feet and lampshades or adding personalized embroidery such as initials, the name of a boat, etc. The measurements of the lamps can also be tailor-made.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ What do you think of natural stone with backlighting? What kind of light and atmosphere can be achieved with pieces of this type?

The backlighting fascinates me. It creates warm, welcoming, and comfortable environments.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ At TINO, we are very proud to have participated in implementing these jewel lamps and have been part of one of your projects. What did Tino contribute as specialists in natural stone?

For me, it is a pleasure to work with professionals like you. You have made the idea I was dreaming and working on for years possible. You captured the idea I had from the beginning and were able to reflect it perfectly, using top quality materials.

Colección Sáhara Raquel Oliva

+ What predictions can you make about the next trends in design lamps in the immediate future?

I don’t know if it will be because I like sober and simple lines, but I predict that the next trends will be towards lamps with clean lines, with adjustable LED lighting, and in line with the environment, highlighting sustainability.


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