Duration: Between the two of us—Silvio Teixeira and Afonso Gonsalves—an average of seven years. Two years as a studio.
Location: Lisbon, Portugal; Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Education: We both studied design at the University of Aveiro, Aveiro, Portugal, followed by photography at the Instituto Português de Fotografia, Lisbon, Portugal.
Career path: We both had the same education, but we followed different career paths after graduation. In addition to graphic design, Silvio delved into film, photography and set design, while Afonso ventured into branding, illustration and web design. Although we initially worked for other companies and studios, we started freelancing quite early in our careers. After a few years of working independently, we decided the world was finally ready for Raquete.
Artistic influences: We could mention a load of people who shaped our work at the very beginning of our careers—but there’s little point in that. Nowadays, our early influences blend in with the infinite randomness of the world and our personal interests. We have a taste for a broad spectrum of styles, and everything we come across can be influential. The hard part is learning how to curate all this stuff, but we’ve reached a certain creative maturity that enables us to browse and identify both conscious and subconscious influences.
Favorite project: The ones that are yet to come. We’re never truly happy with anything we do—at least not for more than a couple of weeks.
Work environment: Our studio is in Lisbon’s historical center, in what used to be an old palace. The building will eventually become a luxury condo, but in the meantime, it’s a nice place with individual artists and a few design and architecture studios. Our headquarters is crammed with props, toys and fidgety stuff. It is a glorious space of total freedom and exploration.
Approach: This is an impossible question—we are unable to go this far into our self-analysis. That said, our new self-promotional video is an attempt to express Raquete’s conceptual and visual approach and make it somehow tangible.
Aspirations: In a perfect world, we’ll only be working half a year on a couple of big assignments and organizing a festival, workshops and lectures. Then we’ll spend the remaining year travelling, surfing and scuba diving. Yes, a good life that will be. Whatever happens, we want to keep having fun while helping clients we love and respect. And we really don’t want to grow into a big studio.
Philosophy: Raquete is at its best when we are fully engaged with the project and client at hand. We work very seriously, but learned that we need to trust our gut instincts and have a bit of fun to keep going. Respect everyone you come across and spread the love. We think the world needs more of that.