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Designs for the new world March 13, 2010

Posted by Karīna Sīmane in design competition.
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It is already two weeks since the 21st international design competition “INTERIEUR 2010” has been launched. This year’s theme is: Designs for the new world.

” The world is changing fast. We are living in turbulent, uncertain times. The music industry, the automobile sector and the press are struggling. Pop culture seems to have lost its momentum. We spend more time online than in our living homes. How can design cope with the new world? Should design be sustainable? Should it be virtual? Should design make us think? Or should it make us feel good? In short: design a product that is relevant right now.”

In my opinion the theme is quite broad. There is given free choice for designer what to design. It could be anything- seating, lightning, things that helps us to arrange our stuff (I think, that is a major problem for many people. We just buy and buy. And we own so many things. How to cope with that?). Design should definitely make us happy and the same time force us to think about the environment around us. Sustainable design for happiness. Thus I would like to express my identity through the things I own. Wouldn’t be nice to have a cupboard in a shape of a barn as an ultimate symbol of the Latvian national character? :

Cabinet by Mara Skujeniece

First of all it’s worth to participate in order to check your creativeness and abilities. Secondly also the total prize money is quite appealing- 40 000 euros spread between 7 different awards. Plus 2 places in the Summer Workshop 2011, organized by the Vitra Design Museum in collaboration with the Centre Pompidou and 2 stands in the idea fair. Even if you will not be among the winners don’t worry. All the entries will be on display during the design biennale from 15th – 24th of October (place- Kortrijk, Belgium) and will be published in the catalog.

You can get some insights in the last INTERIEUR (2008) here:
http://www.designspotter.com/dstvshow/2008/10/Interieur-08-21.-Design-Biennale.html
INTERIEUR 2008 was visited by more than 95.000 visitors and 800 journalists from all over the world. The total event was a great success! Thus 2 Latvian designers were among the winners – Ieva Laurina (founder and co- writer of this blog) and Indra Merca:

Ieva Laurina NEST. Prize awarded by Durlet for a luxurious but relaxing seating element for individual and family use in limited spaces. In addition to that Ieva also received a free stand in 'theyoungdesignersfair'.

Indra Merca BIOSEAT. Category "Playing". Prize awarded by Kortrijk Xpo.

Indra Merca BIO SEAT. Prize awarded by Kortrijk Xpo.

The show is taking place every second year. INTERIEUR was launched in 1968 as Europe’s first International Design Biennale, with a focus on product development and creative innovation. Besides the Biennale INTERIEUR foundation is hosting and organizing many side events like exhibitions, a reputed International Design Competition, debates and lectures. INTERIEUR’s guests of honour have included Raymond Loewy, Gio Ponti, Philippe Starck, Alessandro Mendini, Dieter Rams, Andrea Branzi, Jasper Morrison, Rolf Fehlbaum, Konstantin Grcic, Alfredo Häberli and Jaime Hayon.

For more info check out the website http://www.interieur.be/

Design Talents 2008 (updated) December 3, 2008

Posted by ieva in exhibitions, Uncategorized.
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I finally went to the Design Huis to see the exhibition with the pretentious title “Talents 2008”. It is a selection of 150 graduates from 30 design academies/universities all over the Europe. Initially 70 schools were asked to choose 10 the most interesting of their graduation projects. And, guess, who was the one to decide which are the best projects to exhibit at the Design Huis? Of course, it was the woman of the future, Li Edelkoort (who else..).

The show presents a wide range of design disciplines, including industrial, graphic, jewelery design etc. And a lot of furniture, of course. Many projects are highly conceptual, so you have to read the card to understand what is it about (and sometimes this doesn’t even help).

There were quite a few projects from Design Academy Eindhoven that I mentioned already in the previous post, so I wont repeat myself (:.

Here are some of my favorites.

The foldable bamboo chair by Morten Engebretsen (Norway) is a part of furniture collection where joints and hinges are made out of bamboo based textile. The Flatmate chair can be easily folded and hang on a wall when it is not in use. The designer wants to improve the functionality of small spaces. Elegant and functional!

Judith van den Boom (UK, RCA) has been working in China and has studied materials and the ways they are used. This investigation resulted in porcelain seats. It is a fragile material that has large strength capacity to hold up things. Surprising and poetic. Judith has an inspiring website.

Karin Frankenstein (isn’t it just a perfect name for a young designer?! No problems for memorizing it!) from Sweden makes furniture out of a mix of paper, potato, flour, chalk, clay, cow manure (dung), straw and peat. The material properties are related to clay but the possibilities are extensive, there are fewer restrictions on the size and form. I think it’s just totally amazing to reinvent things once again and play with them!

A mobile radiator by Hedvig af Ekenstam (Sweden). The designer was inspired by knitting methods, she uses heating cable as her wool to create a new type of radiator. It seems to be a new trend (I ve seen some other ones around)- to take your radiator in your bed (: .

Skyline by Benjamin Morin (France). A tool that allows to create a hanging garden that is nourished by impulsive purchase of seasonal plants. Fits perfectly into the growing trend of Guerilla gardening, well, at least, it can be a good start.

Malin Henningsson (Sweden) is interested in human decoration, the relationship between clothing, jewelery and body. He blurs the boundaries using electroforming technique. I like the idea of jewelery becoming clothing and the other way around.

Jeanette New (UK) presents amazing pieces of second hand cloths, embroidered/decorated using plastic bags. That’s also almost jewelery!

You can find more information about this exhibition in the January 2009 issue of the Latvian design magazine Dizaina Studija.