The Team

Eliseo Monfort

Professor of Chemical Engineering and researcher at the Institute of Ceramic Technology “Agustín Escardino” at the Universitat Jaume I of Castelló (Spain). He is currently coordinator of the GAIA research group (group of environmental and energy engineering applied to industrial processes), and co-director of the BP Chair of Industrial Environment.

His activity has been focused on technology transfer to industry in environmental and energy issues, participating in more than 100 R&D projects, funded by public entities and/or private companies.  He is co-author of more than 100 research articles, more than 200 communications in Congresses and 18 books on Ceramic Technology and Environmental Engineering and has supervised 11 PhD thesis.

Tiago Montepegado

Tiago Montepegado, born in 1970, lives and works in Lisbon and in Setubal. He graduated from the Faculty of Architecture of the Technical University of Lisbon in 1995.

Guest Assistant Professor of Project, between 1998 and 2006, in the Architecture Degree at the Modern University of Lisbon.

After establishing Studio in 2001, Montepegado has developed projects in different areas of work, from construction of equipment and housing to requalification of buildings. All his work seeks to create platforms for knowledge and collaboration between different technical and scientific areas with a strong artistic component. This has resulted in a growing collaboration with several visual artists and with Galeria Ratton, of which he became a partner and director in 2005. Since 2009, Montepegado has concentrated all his activity at Galeria Ratton (Ratton Cerâmicas Lda) where, together with Ana Maria Viegas, he has carried out the gallery’s curatorship programme and all the Public Artwork projects.

Since 1987, Galeria Ratton has invited leading national and international contemporary artists to use Azulejo (Earthenware Tile) as a substrate for their creations. Galeria Ratton has carried out a significant set of Public Art works in Portugal and abroad, in which Ratton has assumed full responsibility for the project, production and execution (Oficina Ratton), accompanying the entire process from conception to application.

Pascual Parra

Altadia Group CCO

Degree in Business Law and International Trade from Valencia University

1993: He entered Fritta, a family business in the frit and glaze sector, in sales management

2009: He returned to Fritta, after working 4 years on personal projects, as General Manager in a situation of economic crisis

2013: Acquisition with NAZCA of the Fritta company, rationalising the capital of a third-generation family business

2015: Integration of Fritta into the Esmalglass-Itaca Group participated by INVESTCORP

2017: LONE STAR takes over from INVESTCORP, the senior managers remaining as partners in the company’s capital

2021: Acquisition with LONE STAR of Ferro’s ceramic division, creating the ALTADIA Group

2022: CARLYLE and the senior managers buy the ALTADIA Group

Stephen C. Thorpe

From January 2015 he has been a practicing Health and Safety Consultant specialising in slips, trips and falls, falls from vehicles and stair falls.  Before then he has 28 years’ experience working for the Health and Safety Laboratory (an agency of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)) including 16 years’ experience working on slips trips and falls and stair falls. He has extensive experience of laboratory and site-based work, including forensic investigations and expert witness work. He represented HSE on several British and European Standards Committees.

He has worked in a wide range of sectors including, manufacturing, retail, education, healthcare, food production and processing, catering, leisure, transport and design.

He is the current Chair of the UK Slip Resistance Group and a member of the International Ergonomics Association Technical Committee with the lead for Europe on slips trips and falls.

Millán García-Tola

He earned his Civil Engineering Degree from the Polytechnic University of Madrid. Participant in the 9th rerun of the ESADE Energising Leadership Programme and the 7th rerun of the IMD Global Leadership Programme.

Since 2020, he has been Global Head of Green Hydrogen at Iberdrola. The Company works in 60 countries worldwide in projects on hydrogen obtained with renewable energies. Millan García-Tola’s aim is to position the energy company as a global leader in this industry segment.

Millán García-Tola Monpín has been involved in the energy sector for 25 years. Since 2000, he has work at Iberdrola. He has directed Projects and Development at Iberdrola Mexico, and in Spain has led the extension of the hydroelectric power station at La Muela, the largest reversible pumping power station on the European continent.

Fernando Palomo

Strategy and management consultant specialising in the ceramic sector. Until 2021 he was executive director of the ceramic area at Azuliber with a 25-year track record in the sector, having previously worked in real estate and tourism. He earned a Law Degree from Valencia University, did a course on senior management in international companies by ESADE, Marketing Online and e-commerce by ACEDIS, and did a Master course in corporate legal consultancy services by IE Business School. Highly engaged in quality initiatives in innovation, at both business and sector level, in the period under his leadership Azuliber won Alfa de Oro Awards in 2015 and in 2020 jointly with Neos Additives and Bestile.

Damià Díaz

Damià Díaz is a Spanish artist with an international track record that evidences his quest to bring together modernity, humanism, and classicism. Addressing concepts that are not just modern society’s but also eternal concerns, such as rootlessness, mockery, balance, or silence. Works that are reflections and sometimes premonitions of our time.

His exhibitions are also part of his creative process, a dialogue between the work, the spectator and the space from which his complex dialogue with architecture emerges. His first major international intervention was Time and Thought at Saint Louis de l’Hôpital Salpêtrière – Paris, MUA – Alicante, in 2002. An exhibition made for a space, in which Anish Kapoor had exhibited four years earlier in 1998 and Jenny Holzer exhibited LEDS the year before, 2001. After Paris and Alicante came Enclosure of Ideas, at Valencia University, (at the Sapiencia Chapel) – Valencia, 2004 and Talking Head – Valencia and New York in 2005. In 2010, A-Factorij Art Project, Amsterdam and in 2012, The Space Between Words, at the Erasmus House Museum in Rotterdam, and in Brussels.

In 2019, with his great exhibition in Lisbon, Path of the Gaze, at the National Museum of the Ajuda Palace, Damià was the first contemporary Spanish artist to exhibit in the museum, and the second to dialogue with the incredible artistic and historical heritage of the Palace after the exhibition by Joana Vasconcelos in 2013. Ceramic Place is one of his works included in this exhibition, which was part of the Mostra Espanha 2019 biennial show programme in Portugal.

Margarida Botto

Margarida Donas Botto is a Senior Technician at the General Directorate for Cultural Heritage, in Lisbon, and works in the Communication Division. She coordinates and produces the radio programme “Encontros com o Património”, which is broadcast weekly, on topics and searches linked to the world of Culture, and also co-authors the project (a)Riscar o Património, in partnership with Urban Sketchers Portugal Group, which enters its 9th edition in 2022.

Although her training is linked to the world of conservation and restoration and built heritage management, she has devoted much of her recent activity to cultural dissemination, expansion of the heritage concept, intercultural approximation, creation of networks with communities and with the general public, and interaction with contemporary art.

She has participated in debates and has published scientific articles on vernacular architecture, heritage in general, and on cultural dissemination.

Joaquín Longares

He earned his Degree in Industrial Engineering from the Universitat Politècnica de València, specialising in Electricity, and did IESE and Business Institute management training programmes and the School of Industrial Organisation (EOI) Programme in Business Management. He is currently Commercial Director of Iberdrola for the Valencia and Murcia Region. His career at Iberdrola began in 1991, when he was appointed head of New Supplies in the Valencia area, in the Distribution business. He moved to Commercial Management in 1997, going on to become Large Customer Manager in the Valencia and Murcia Region in 2002, with a break in the period 2000–2002 when he was appointed Commercial Manager for New Markets in order to coordinate the company’s entry into non-traditional Iberdrola territories (Galicia, Asturias, Aragon, Catalonia, and Andalusia).

Gonzalo Silva Moreno

Degree in Chemical Sciences (specialising in Industrial Chemistry) from Valencia University in 1987 and PhD in Chemical Sciences from Universitat Jaume I in 2006. Assistant Professor in the Chemical Engineering Department at Universitat Jaume I of Castellón from 2001 to 2007.
He has been part of the Instituto de Tecnología Cerámica (ITC) since 1989 and is currently Deputy Director of AICE and Head of the Product and Construction Area.
Co-author of 31 scientific papers in Spanish and international journals, he has participated in different national and international conferences with 37 communications. He has also co-authored 3 books in the field of ceramic technology.
He has participated as senior researcher in 63 R&D and Technology Consultancy Services projects conducted at ITC, funded by raw materials producers and ceramic tile, frit and glaze, roofing tile and brick manufacturing companies, etc., as well as by public bodies belonging to the Valencia Regional Government, Spanish Government, and European Community.
Member of the Spanish (AEN/CTN 138), European (CEN TC 67), and international (ISO TC 189) ceramic tile standardization committees and of European Committee CEN TC 339 “Slip resistance of pedestrian surfaces – Methods of evaluation”.