Grassimesse 2024: Call for Entries

As Europe begins to ardently shake of the last remnants of winter and the first green and blue and yellow and white specks appear in parks and gardens, as the chance that summer might just arrive becomes tangible…. October can seem a mighty long way away. Unimaginable. But it is approaching.

As is the 2024 Grassimesse.

The path thereto has been laid and until Wednesday May 15th are all called upon to apply…….

Grassimesse 2024

Staged in and by the Grassi Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Leipzig, and tracing its (hi)story back to 1920, the annual Grassimesse is, as oft noted in these dispatches, not only one of the oldest sales fairs devoted to contemporary craft, applied art and design, devoted to promoting discussions and discourses on contemporary craft, applied art and design, but was initiated in context of advancing meaningful, relevant, contemporary craft, applied art and design of a high quality; a task that was important in the 1920s against the background of the earliest attempts at mass industrial production of objects of daily use, and which often produced but tat. And a task that remains important in the 2020s in context of, what is becoming, a veritable flood of “design fairs” where anyone and everyone can exhibit whatever, events that all too often are but commercially motivated excuses for wasteful bling, tasteless misinterpretations of upcycling and/or tired cliché. And cupcakes.

Charged with ensuring the enduring quality of the Grassimesse is the Grassimesse Jury, an institution who nominate from the applicants those permitted to attend; an institution that since the 1920s has been reconstituted on an annual basis by way of keeping it fresh, stopping bad habits becoming convention; an institution whose members in 2024 include, alongside Grassi Museum für Angewandte Kunst Director Olaf Thormann and Sabine Epple, Curator of the Museum’s Modern Collection and long term head of, long term guider of, the Grassimesse, the likes of, and amongst others, art and design historian Chantal Prod´Hom who served for over a decade as Director of the Museum of Contemporary Design and Applied Arts, mudac, Lausanne; Christianne Weber-Stöber the former Director of the Deutschen Goldschmiedehauses Hanau and author of numerous works on jewellery, or interior architect Toni Piskač who after almost 20 years as Head of Workplace Consulting & Space Planning for Vitra established his own interior design/architecture practice in Berlin from where he and his team realise projects for international clients, and a Toni Piskač who over the decades has become a well known face in the offices and shops of smow.

And a Grassimesse Jury who also anoint the winners of the annual Grassi Prizes, awards which in 2024 include the Grassipreis der Carl und Anneliese Goerdeler-Stiftung which enables a purchase for the Museum collection, the wood oriented Jan Willems-Preis or the smow-Designpreis, the latter awarded for the first time in 2023 when it was shared between Budapest based furniture and lighting design studio Line and Round, I O and Nürnberg based glassmaker Cornelius Réer.

But winning a Grassi Prize is currently as far away as, and as unimaginable as, October.

First you’ve got to be accepted for the Grassimesse.

And that means applying.

And convincing the Grassimesse Jury.

Applications are open until Wednesday May 15th.

Full details on the application process, and what awaits you if selected, can be found at

Good Luck!!!

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