“Our practice invites others to experience what the day to day could feel like when we are brought back to our native origins, living in harmony with nature in our modern time.”
ALEX VASQUEZ + MATT FIELY
HOW DO YOU START YOUR PROCESS?
In the mountains, we've grown accustomed to waking up before the sun just to see it rise. We begin the morning building a fire and playing music before we enter into our studio work.
In a few words, describe yourself and your practice.
da.to.da, meaning "day to day", is a small design atelier for slower living. We are Alex Vasquez and Matt Fiely and our intention is not to make objects with a decorative value, but instead something honest. We are submersed in the beauty of the everyday. Our practice invites others to experience what the day to day could feel like when we are brought back to our native origins, living in harmony with nature in our modern time. We've found this simple connection to be deeply therapeutic in all of our lives because it clarifies and recenters us. As designers, this is very important to us.
Kodama (our lamps) is one example of our approach. By observing our relationship to light, time and space, we believe that connecting with the rhythms of nature brings clarity to the mind and body.
When did you start your practice?
We started working together four years ago, and da.to.da has since been a natural evolution from our work in architecture, interiors, and clothing.
Is your practice how you support yourself? If not, what else are you working on to do so?
Alex is also finishing her dissertation in sociology. Her work in this area has inspired much of da.to.da's philosophy. Our approach has become more empathic to the needs of society as a whole, yet sensitive to the everyday experience of environment.
WHAT'S YOUR ADVICE FOR THOSE WHO ASPIRE TO DO WHAT YOU DO?
Never set a limit.
WHAT ARE SOME CHALLENGES YOU'RE FACING IN YOUR PRACTICE?
Communicating our authentic selves in today's era of internet consumption is a challenge for us. We've learned to let go of this and just let it be.
Are you comfortable sharing all aspects of your process? if not, why?
Sharing with others is inspiring for our own process. We like to have people visit our atelier and understand our process by living with us on the day to day.
What makes your work unique?
We put intention into our work from how we conceive of need, design and artisanship. Da.to.da Atelier is the harmony of these intellectual, intuitive and natural approaches to home living design.
What would you be doing if you weren't doing this?
It's hard to imagine not living the life the way we do, but we're both drawn to music so maybe making music or working with food.
HOW WOULD YOUR AUDIENCE DESCRIBE YOU?
Purveyors of authentic, natural design with an honest approach to home living.
WHO (OR WHAT) INSPIRES YOU?
Authenticity is inspiring. It's truthful, and we all seek it. Our search for authenticity is what drew us to surround ourselves in nature.
WHAT'S THE MOST USEFUL TIP OR ADVICE THAT YOU'VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
Listen to your intuition. It's far more intelligent than the mind.
HOW DOES WHERE YOU LIVE AFFECT YOUR WORK?
We believe that as humans we are no different than any other species in that we evolve as a result of our environments. For us, having our atelier in the rural beauty of the white mountains is essential for our evolution as artists.
“We have several meeting places-one overlooks a ravine, the other two overlook a valley of blueberries. We like to spend time there when we are developing thoughts.”
How has your practice changed over time? Where do you see it going?
Our vision has become stronger and clearer. Learning more about life and ourselves over the years has raised our datum point, making our work more honest.
What are you currently working on?
We are releasing several products, which will be in our online shop over the next couple months. we are also looking for spaces throughout America to host an art installation/pop-up, and are working on a Kodama cabin.