In our post from the exhibition Schrill Bizarr Brachial. Das Neue Deutsche Design der 80er Jahre at the Bröhan Museum Berlin we noted that, for us, the two most important legacies of the Neues deutsches Design movement and 1980s German Postmodernism are and were the number of protagonists from then currently teaching at German design schools, and those manufacturers who arose from the heady, damp haze of the period. Manufacturers such as Nils Holger Moormann.
Established in the early 1980s from the youthful design experiences of the bored but otherwise upstanding law student Nils Holger Moormann, the eponymous company has evolved over the past three decades to establish itself as one of Europe’s most interesting and challenging contemporary furniture producers.
At the 2015 Ambiente interiors fair Nils Holger Moormann will be awarded the “Personality” lifetime achievement award by the Rat für Formgebung – the German Design Council. Much as we have an innate mistrust of design awards, and for all of lifetime achievement awards for the living and lively, the combination of the award and the exhibition offer the perfect excuse to speak with Nils Holger Moormann about furniture design and the furniture industry then, now and in the future, but we began by asking how he found his way to furniture design……
Nils Holger Moormann: Pure chance. I’d studied law for 8 semesters, wasn’t really enjoying it and then, and as so often happens, through chance and acquaintances I was introduced to this world of contemporary design, and was immediately enthralled. There were terrible things, fantastic things, high-tech creations, Bauhaus and more traditional furniture mixed with objects which had been completely ripped out of context, and I found that all absolutely fascinating. I didn’t really understand any of it, but the spirit of adventure and freedom allowed even those without a relevant academic or professional background to get involved and simply through learning by doing to find your own way.
smow blog: And were you aware of what one could call a “scene”, or how did you experience the situation?
Nils Holger Moormann: I wasn’t aware of a scene as such. It was a relatively small, informal community, and one simply drifted through it. You met people, were subsequently invited somewhere, were introduced to new people, heard that they were doing this or that and from that work learned of other designers. For me it was like a huge festival with a 1000 surprises, everything was possible, you were puzzled, dumbfounded, surprised, didn’t understand; one was simply aware of being part of something new and invigorating.
smow blog: Does the fact that you found your way to design via Neues deutsches Design mean you had no interest in the more functional design, for example the so-called gute Form, that up until then had largely dominated German design?
Nils Holger Moormann: No, no not all. For me this Neues deutsches Design was wonderfully shrill and bizarre and one was aware of celebrating a revolution; but what principally interested me was a reduced design that had an added value, a design which contained an idea, an idea that caught my imagination. And much as I would often fall in love with shrill and wacky objects, I was only a true proponent of the more reserved design objects
smow blog: And were you designing yourself in those days?
Nils Holger Moormann: Initially no, I set myself up more as a sales rep, and would travel through Germany and Europe meeting designers and architects who were producing their own designs and would take on the distribution for them; the idea was to become similar to a publisher for extraordinary books.
smow blog: The only object from that period still in production with yourselves is the Gespanntes Regal from Wolfgang Laubersheimer, is that the only “extraordinary” book that has survived the ravages of time, or perhaps better put, why has it survived the ravages of time?
Nils Holger Moormann: When one looks back to that period the Gespanntes Regal is in general one of only very few pieces that are still in production. The Gespanntes Regal is one of those pieces that fascinated me from the first moment I saw it: an unstable construction that can’t support itself but which then receives its tension, stability and functionality from a simple steel cable, and it is a piece that not only remains as fresh and relevant for me today as back then but is an object which still stands for our philosophy.
smow blog: Which of course poses the obvious next question, is there anything from the spirit of then to be found in the contemporary German furniture industry?
Nils Holger Moormann: Unfortunately not. It was a protest and a revolution and an attempt to forge something new, but that is history and now we have a situation where we’re largely driven by industry; many of the current manufactures don’t even have owners but rather are part of larger concerns, exist in effect simply to generate profit, and the result is the furniture that is being offered all looks the same. Everything has become very homogeneous, so much so that sometimes I have the feeling that if you were to go to IMM Cologne at night and mix up the furniture, take pieces from one stand and place them on another, hardly anyone would notice. And that is a shame because it means the esprit, the curiosity, the aspiration is missing. Sometimes I have the feeling that the only passion that is there is to make sellable products, and that’s not the the way forward. Yes you have got to have the luck to make a profit and remain financially stable, but you also need to search for new ideas and new approaches and for me that currently occurs too infrequently. For me there is too little protest, too few attempts to try something new, even when you know that it might not work, to at least try. In my opinion we desperately need a new revolution!
smow blog: Need, but will we get?
Nils Holger Moormann: I’m of a naturally positive disposition and I believe that it will come. Not least because the young designers today must increasingly take everything into their own hands and so will be forced to find new ways, new solutions and new systems. And much like in the 1980s through that searching will come the changes.
smow blog: We sense however the spirit of then still forms a key part of who you are and how you operate?
Nils Holger Moormann: Yes, Gott sei dank! The moment the youthful searching, the curiosity and the passion stops that’s the moment you become pragmatic and start to optimise things on a purely economic level. But before the financial must always come the exploration, the esprit and the passion.
Nils Holger Moormann.Designer. Entrepreneur. Publisher. (Photo ©Dirk Bruniecki)
Gespanntes Regal by Wolfgang Laubersheimer (l) and Mai '68 by Detlef Meyer Voggenreither (r), as seen at Schrill Bizarr Brachial. Das Neue Deutsche Design der 80er Jahre, Bröhan Museum Berlin
Posted in Exhibitions and Shows, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Aschau, Gespanntes RegalRegal, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Wolfgang Laubersheimer
For many, the darkest, furthest removed edge of the (smow) universe is (smow) Chemnitz.
(smow) however reaches further.
To Manly, New South Wales, to be precise and (smow) Australia.
More of a cousin than a member of the immediate (smow) family, (smow) Australia offer products by leading European manufacturers including Nils Holger Moormann, Richard Lampert, LoCa, Jonas & Jonas and Kabré-Leipzig to the good people of Sydney and, through their online shop, beyond. And now have their own blog: (smow) Australia Blog.
In addition to regular posts on the wonderful world of Nils Holger Moormann the (smow) Australia Blog also aims to document and cover themes of relevance, importance and interest to all passionate about high quality contemporary furniture, architecture and interiors in Australia.
We obviously recommend it. And for our part, we’re looking forward to “borrowing” ideas from our antipodean cobbers.
G’day (smow) Australia Blog!
(smow) Australia: A new star for a new country......
Posted in Moormann, Producer, Product, Richard Lampert, smow Tagged with: Australia, jonas & jonas, Kabré-Leipzig, loca, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Richard Lampert, smow
One of the first telephone calls Mateo Kries and Marc Zehntner made upon assuming leadership of the Vitra Design Museum in 2011 was to Konstantin Grcic to discuss the possibility of an exhibition. Grcic was, in principle, open to the idea, but, “I didn’t want a static exhibition, something that froze my work in time, rather I wanted something dynamic”
That “something dynamic” is the exhibition Konstantin Grcic – Panorama which opened at the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein on Friday March 21st 2014.
The dynamic Netscape installation by Konstantin Grcic in front of the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein
Presenting some 200 objects divided across four thematic sections, Panorama is, in effect, two exhibitions in one. The first, staged downstairs in the museum, addresses design themes of particular importance to Konstantin Grcic. And which Konstantin Grcic believes should be of importance to us as all. The exhibition opens with Life Space, a look at Grcic’s considerations on the future of domestic arrangements before moving over Work Space, an exploration of Konstantin Grcic’s own work process which doubles up as a discussion on the contemporary design process in general, and on to Public Space, which addresses the future of our urban spaces. The “second exhibition”, staged upstairs under the title Object Space, looks at Grcic’s oeuvre in more detail, presenting examples of Grcic’s works, be they products for manufacturers as varied as Moormann, Magis, ClassiCon or Flos, objects created in cooperation with galleries or projects that have never had a life outwith Konstantin Grcic’s Munich studio. Grcic’s own work standing juxtaposed to and in context of other, third-party, objects that have a particular relevance to Konstantin Grcic, his understanding of and approach to design and which have inspired and motivated his own creativity.
The separation is not just spatial and conceptual but also stylistic. Whereas the first three sections are presented true to Grcic’s position that “my designs do not immediately reveal themselves” and require the visitor to first identify the issues involved and then consider their own position to the questions raised, the final section is a classic example of dry, perfunctory, museal presentation.
Both Konstantin Grcic and Vitra Design Museum Chief Curator Mateo Kries speak of the fourth section as an exhibition within an exhibition. And of it having been deliberately conceived in such an immediate and unchallenging manner.
We can’t help feeling it is meant ironically.
“Look at the Grcic retrospective. How cute!”, the designati will no doubt squeal…..
It is a delightful, clearly structured presentation from which we learned a lot about Konstantin Grcic and how he works, but which we cannot, and honestly never will be able to, take seriously.
A state of affairs we thoroughly approve of.
The Object Space section of Konstantin Grcic – Panorama at the Vitra Design Museum
As with the exhibition Lightopia for us the biggest problem with Panorama is the lack of space in the Vitra Design Museum.
Konstantin Grcic speaks about Frank Gehry’s building as being a challenge, of if it having a character, rough corners and how he likes that. In a building and in an object.
But there is no escaping the fact that one of the Vitra Design Museum’s characteristics is a lack of space. It may suffice for the conservative exhibition format as represented in the Object Space section, but an ambitious project on the scale of Panorama simply needs more space.
Each of the four sections can make a valid claim to be an exhibition in its own right – in our time we’ve viewed exhibitions hung on much thinner premises – and despite the scaling back that has obviously been undertaken in the development of the exhibition concept, one still feels occasionally cramped, or at least a little unwelcome. As if you should read a text about the exhibition rather than trouble the aching, distended space with your bulk.
The Life Space section, for example, should, indeed must, be a display that one can walk around and explore, touch, sit on, inhabit, not just view at a distance from the comfort of a Bench B. While Work Space needs to offer, well, space to work, which it currently doesn’t. The layout making it more reminiscent of a warehouse than a workshop; dormant rather than dynamic. And that not because the curators lacked the nous to think up anything else. But because of space issues.
None of which should be seen as criticism of the exhibition itself. Far from it.
Panorama is not an exhibition that is going to necessarily bring you any closer to Konstantin Grcic’s work per se. Grcic himself yes. But not his work. But then that isn’t the point. It is not really an exhibition about Konstantin Grcic’s work. It is an exhibition about contemporary design and the contemporary designer. Konstantin Grcic is merely the conduit.
Design today is inflationary. There is ever more “design” because ever more aspects of our daily life are presented, sold and understood as design. Even if they patently aren’t. Consequently the term “design” and the function of the “designer” become unclear, confused, contradictory and ultimately meaningless and irrelevant. Panorama helps focus the mind on what design really is. Or perhaps better put what contemporary design should be.
What is truly important for the home of the future? How can new technologies be best employed, rather than just employed? What forms will new technologies allow? And which are desirable? Sensible? What does it mean today to “live” some where? What is “work”? Are we prepared to sacrifice our privacy for domestic convenience? How can design help us achieve what we want and require? What, and how much, responsibility do designers carry in such processes?
Such questions are extended by a series of boards featuring snippets from articles and academic papers that approach and tackle related social, cultural and economic issues: Can deserts power the earth? Is a world without businesses and factories conceivable? Is the cloud polluting the air? The virtues of squatting……
The exhibition doesn’t do anything especially deep nor does the exhibition tackle all issues in contemporary design far less raise any new ones, but also doesn’t intend to: it is an exhibition by Konstantin Grcic about those things that matter to Konstantin Grcic and which Konstantin Grcic wants us all to consider more carefully.
And it does that very effectively, with very simple means and in a very accessible, if challenging, fashion.
Panorama also makes perfectly clear that the future is also about each one of us personally accepting our own share of the collective responsibility. And one can only take responsibility seriously when one appreciates and understands the world around you. Something made singularly clear in the exhibition segment Public Space. Housed in the largest space in the Vitra Design Museum Public Space is dominated by a 30 meter long, 4.5 metre high fantasy cityscape by London based artist Neil Campbell Ross. In front of this cityscape have been scattered a few Chair Ones on concrete pedestals and Grcic’s experimental 2007 project Landen. That’s it. There is also a fence. Which we thought was just for decoration, a 3D extension of the painting if you will, the actual thinking behind its inclusion is however depressingly clichéd. And so we’ll ignore it. And in any case, the focus of the room is the cityscape and the questions it allows about the current state of our urban environments and how we want them to develop. On the information panels Grcic poses questions concerning, for example, ownership of urban spaces, the requirement for humane urban forms or future urban mobility. What do we want from our future cities? How each of us responds and reacts to such challenges will ultimately affect the nature of our cities, and so determine if we become the future we want. Do we really want to leave such considerations to designers? Who is actually paying designers? And so once again, do we really want to leave such considerations to designers?
Life Space. Konstantin Grcic – Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
Conceptual exhibitions such as Panorama always run the risk of becoming an intellectual emperors new clothes: the curators stare long and hard in their navels and devise a big concept composed of the finest theories elegantly stitched with doctrines and ideologies, the masses flock and announce themselves overwhelmed by the majesty of the spectacle. But ultimately all one has created is a vast excess of narcissistic pomp.
Panorama avoids such a fate by avoiding answering any questions, far less presenting a vision of the future. That’s your job. “I hope”, so Grcic, “visitors take the exhibition as the beginning of a discussion and reflect on what is presented and decide if one agrees with our positions. Or not.”
Which all of course makes one thing very clear, Konstantin Grcic – Panorama isn’t an exhibition for lazy Sunday afternoon with a hangover. Or at least the first three sections aren’t. The fourth almost invites such a condition. But, and in all seriousness, if you want to get anything useful out of the exhibition you need to invest time and mental effort.
Or perhaps better put, if you want to get anything useful out of the exhibition you need to view it as dynamically as Konstantin Grcic conceived it.
Konstantin Grcic – Panorama can be viewed at the Vitra Design Museum, Charles-Eames-Strasse 2, 79576 Weil am Rhein, Germany until Sunday September 14th 2014. Full details including opening times, ticket prices and information on the accompanying fringe programme can be found at www.design-museum.de
- The dynamic Netscape installation by Konstantin Grcic in front of the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein
- Public Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- The Object Space section of Konstantin Grcic - Panorama at the Vitra Design Museum
- Work Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Object Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Waver, Mayday and Hut ab, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Life Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Wanda by Konstantinn Grcic, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Work Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Object Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- 360 Degree Chair by Konstantin Grcic, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Myto Chair by Konstantin Grcic, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Object Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Object Space. Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Chair One by Konstantin Grcic, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- A prototype and finished object from Konstantin Grcic's Man Machine project. As seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama
- Bench B by Konstantin Grcic, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
- Part of the cityscape painting Neil Campbell Ross, as seen at Konstantin Grcic - Panorama, Vitra Design Museum
Posted in ClassiCon, Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Magis, Moormann, Producer, Product, Vitra, Weil am Rhein Tagged with: Chair One, ClassiCon, Hut ab, Konstantin Grcic, Magis, Moormann, Vitra, Vitra Design Museum, Waver, Weil am Rhein
IMM Cologne kept us busy into February, but the month also saw the opening of an Eileen Gray retrospective in Paris, a visit to the Louis Kahn exhibition at the Vitra Design Museum and the sad passing of James Irvine….
Pivot office chair by Antonio Citterio for Vitra, here at Orgatec Cologne 2012
IMM Cologne 2013: PS 07 Bureau by Delphin Design for Müller Möbelfabrikation
Dressing table screen by Eileen Gray
IMM Cologne 2013: Wilde+Spieth present Egon Eiermann's SE 68 and SE 42 in the new "Les Couleurs" range from Le Corbusier
Louis Kahn The Power of Architecture @ Vitra Design Museum
James Irvine 1958-2013
Watn Blech by Bernhard Osann for Moormann
Posted in Architecture, Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, imm cologne, Interview, Moormann, Müller Möbelfabrikation, Producer, Product, smow, Weil am Rhein, Wilde + Spieth Tagged with: Antonio Citterio, Bernhard Osann, Delphin Design, Eileen Gray, James Irvine, Moormann, Müller Möbelfabrikation, PS 07, SE 42, SE 68, Vitra, Vitra Design Museum, Watn Blech, wilde + spieth
It’s not always good.
Waistlines. Overdrafts. Weeks since you last phoned your mother.
For example wouldn’t be good.
Business expansion is however good.
And the best news is that (smow) continues to expand.
Following on from the “original” (smow)rooms in Leipzig and Chemnitz, the (smow) online designer furniture store opened its virtual doors in 2008 before in 2012 (smow) Stuttgart joined the family.
2013 has already seen the launch of (smow) Erfurt, and since early October 2013 (smow) Cologne has been trading in a 230 sqm showroom in the city’s historic Waidmarkt.
Offering a full range of products from leading contemporary furniture manufacturers including USM Haller, Vitra, LoCa, Belux and Nils Holger Moormann, (smow) Cologne is run by Anett Ahlefeld and Guido Eichel, a management team who join (smow) from Vitra where for the past 15 years they have advised and assisted customers in Cologne, Bonn, Aachen and environs. Experience and product competence that is now available to all, private and business customers alike.
If you are in Cologne do drop by and say hello. And if you say “Kölle Alaaf! (smow) blog sent us”, you can claim your free apple. As in a piece of fruit. Obviously. Not a computer. That would be daft.1
(smow) Cologne can be found at Waidmarkt 11, 50676 Köln.
And at www.facebook.com/smow.koln
A few impressions:
- (smow) Cologne
- The Kölner Wohnzimmer at (smow) Cologne
- USM Haller at (smow) Cologne
- USM Haller and Vitra at (smow) Cologne
- Vitra and Moormann at (smow) Cologne
- (smow) Cologne
- (smow) Cologne
- (smow) Cologne
- Eames Lounge Chair at (smow) Cologne
1. Free apples strictly subject to availability. No cash alternatives. But possibly citrus alternatives.
Posted in Belux, Kölle Alaaf, Moormann, Producer, Product, smow, smow offline, USM Haller, Vitra Tagged with: Belux, knax, köln, loca, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, USM Haller, Vitra
As we noted in our designer barbecue post “… summer is bidding its final farewells”
And with autumn’s impudent chill invading ever more our pastoral calm the time for our hibernation approaches. And so we’re currently exploring accommodation options.
Fortunately it’s been a bit of a “small house year” in these pages with, for example, Renzo Piano Building Workshop and Vitra’s Diogene or Jean Prouve’s Maison des Jours Meilleurs occupying our thoughts.
Our first contact with reduced room accomodation however came in May when (smow) made their debut at Leipzig’s premier contemporary art showcase, the Baumwollspinnerei Rundgang, a debut ably supported by a small Moormann house.
Back in 2006 Nils Holger Moormann released Walden, a sleek, unobtrusive outdoor construction inspired by the book “Walden; or, Life in the Woods” by Henry David Thoreau.
Featuring storage space, a barbecue, seating and even a sky lounge, Walden offers everything you could possibly require for a few relaxed days out of doors. Be that in the woods as Thoreau recommended, on the side of a lake or simply at the bottom of your garden.
At the 2006 “The Design Annual” trade fair in Frankfurt, Moormann celebrated their new product with a specially adapted, and anything but unobtrusive, version of Walden as their fair stand: and a couple of years ago that very stand was, legally, acquired by (smow)
And so it came to pass that for the 2013 Spring Rundgang the former Moormann fair stand was selected to provide the central focus of the (smow) (self)presentation.
It just had to be constructed.
Before the act the warnings were of a building process of biblical proportions, weeks would be required boomed the Gods of Doom, the service of a veritable plaque of Bavarian engineers was prophesied.
In the end it took a little over two and half minutes…..
Posted in Architecture, Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Moormann, Producer, Product, smow Tagged with: Leipzig, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Walden
Back at Saloni Milano 2010 Ronan Bouroullec told us about his feeling that the internet and new technology could, perhaps even should, eventually, replace the resources and time invested – and ultimately wasted – every year in an event such as Milan Furniture Fair.
In 2013 everyone’s favourite German conceptual contemporary furniture manufacturer Moormann, have made the start.
And in doing so proved that even from the pastoral calm of Aschau im Chiemgau, one can still be part of the Milan madness.
In our conversations with Moormann ahead of Milan they told us we could “look forward” to what they were organising in place of their regular Saloni Milano stand.
Which is a nice line in modest understatement one dosen’t normally associate with Moormänner…..
For rather than investing in the faltering Italian economy, Moormann have created a celluloid masterpiece!
To make things easier we’ve embedded the film here. The original can be found at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8GwMxAsHnc
Posted in Exhibitions and Shows, Fuorisalone, Fuorisalone Milan Design Week, Milan Design Week, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Moormann
In little under a week the Doors of Hell will once again open to release Milan Design Week on our unsympathetic, unapologetic world.
The normally pleasant, quiet and reasonably priced Lombardian metropolis will be overrun by molten rivers of corporate greed and naive student hope, transforming the canals, parks and former industrial sites into burning pits of contradiction, imitation and pure gold.
Survival is a question of ignoring reality and convincing yourself that everything is brilliant and that you are having a really, really good time.
Technically, the same procedure as every year…..
….. only this year one of the saner heads in the madness will sadly be missing: Moormann ain’t going.
Milan Design Week 2013: Moormann non è presente
Essentially the reason is dissatisfaction with the stand they were offered at the furniture fair and a general unhappiness with the way the whole process was/is organised and communicated.
When we spoke to Nils Holger Moormann in 2011 he commented on the problems of the stand distribution in Milan.
And in recent conversations with senior managers from other contemporary furniture producers we know how infuriating and drawn out the stand distribution system in Milan is.
The majority however see no alternative and so endure what they must endure to ensure their presence.
Presumably with 2013 the Moormann camel has finally had one straw too many placed, roughly, on its back.
For us the bitter irony is that the vast majority of Hall 20 – which is where the contemporary manufacturers are housed – will be Italian producers who not only are presenting nothing even vaguely innovative, but whose “new” objects are not even destined to see production and are only on display to catch attention.
Wasting space for show rather than using the opportunity to allow the industry to grow and develop.
While we’ll obviously miss Moormann, we do find the resistance good. Milan’s monopoly needs to be broken, and while that will be a long process the more people who make the conscious decision not to go, and publicly justify it, the quicker we will have the alternatives the contemporary designer furniture industry so badly needs.
The one, very, positive fact in Moormann’s decision is of course that when faced with a challenge, Moormann tend to respond in the most glorious, creative, off-beat fashion.
The Bookinist Cup being one of the better examples.
We know that Morrmann have new products. We know Moormann want to show them.
We can’t wait to find out where and how that is.
Naturally, what with Moormann being Moormann, they didn’t announce their Milan absence with a simple press release.
No. Moormann developed a board game.
And we, having as ever far too much time on our hands, managed to play a quick round….
Posted in Exhibitions and Shows, Fuorisalone, Fuorisalone Milan Design Week, Milan Design Week, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Salone Milano
In the past couple of years we have often referred to, but never actually shown, the shelf “Das Brett” by Belgian designer Kaspar Hamacher.
A shelf that is one of our abbiding memories of Milan 2010.
That and nearly drowning…..
The release of Watn Blech by Bernhard Osann for Moormann however provides the perfect opportunity to right that wrong.
Das Brett by Kaspar Hamacher as seen at the showcase "Le Belge", Milan 2010.
What attracted us to Das Brett, and has always remained with us, was the very simple principle behind the piece.
By gently inclining the shelf towards the centre one creates a surface that provides greater stability than the traditional “flat” book shelf.
The secret of the design is in the angle of the inclination: just enough to be functional without compromising the proportions.
Watn Blech by Bernhard Osann for Moormann applies a similar principle.
Though with Watn Blech the “stability” attained is primarily not in context of the objects on the shelf. But the shelf itself.
If we remember correctly from what we learned at school “Magic” and “Physics” are synonyms.
So let’s say that through the dark beauty of magic, gently bending a piece of sheet metal increases its stability.
The secret of the design is in the angle of the bending: just enough to be functional without compromising the proportions.
In addition, through the gentle incline one creates a convenient, and inherently stable, storage surface that subtly subverts the, invariably, linear homogeneity of a room.
And because it’s a Moormann product you get a convenient, and inherently stable, storage surface with an inbuilt piece of innocent, childlike, fun…. The shelf look like it’s been incorrectly hung!!
Watn Blech by Bernhard Osann for Moormann
Watn Blech by Bernhard Osann for Moormann
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Bernhard Osann, Moormann, Watn Blech
On Friday last week we were at a discussion in Potsdam where Nils Holger Moormann spoke as eloquently and convincingly as ever about the advantages of long lifecyles for furniture and the continual development that is possible when one understands furniture as an evolving entity and not as a quick, profit generating, commodity.
Referring, for example, to the FNP shelving system he commented, something along the lines of: even after 25 years one always finds new ways of extending and developing the system.
And it’s not just the company’s own products that are continually reworked and developed.
Inspired by the (smow)graphic department’s sensitive yet unsentimental reworking of Moormann’s former, as one now must correctly say, square logo, the good folks in Aschau put aside the pre-Christmas workload stress to help (smow) achieve a more fitting, modern corporate identity.
One of the new logos they created can be found at the top left of this page.
And indeed so happy are the (smow)bosses with the work delivered thus far, they are currently considering if they shouldn’t ask Moormann to create a logo for the new (smow)room Stuttgart. The question is, if that isn’t asking too much of the Chiemgau creative forge…..
An early attempt by (smow)blog to elongate the Nils Holger Moormann logo.
Posted in Moormann, Producer, smow Tagged with: Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Stuttgart
If there is a chair on the market at the moment that better symbolises how complex simplicity in design is than Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler for Moormann. We want to see it.
At Milan 2011 Nils Holger Moormann told us of the literal and figurative mountain pass that had to be negotiated before Harry’s idea could be transformed into a market ready, mass producible product.
Then ahead of Milan 2012 Harry Thaler then told us about the long way from the original experiments with wood until he had the concept that won Nils’ heart.
Now we have the most delightful film documenting the creation of the prototype in a North London metal workshop.
We don’t believe Dieter Rams included “Good design is hard work” in his list of design principles. He might want to consider adding it……
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer, Product Tagged with: Harry Thaler, Moormann, Pressed Chair
At Milan 2011 Moormann presented the prototype of Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler. At Milan 2012 the market ready version was/is being officially unveiled.
Last year Nils Holger Moormann enthused at great length about Pressed Chair. And so to complete the story, ahead of Milan 2012 we caught up with Harry Thaler in his London studio to learn more about both him and the background to Pressed Chair.
Harry Thaler on his Pressed Chair in front of his London Atelier
(smow)blog: To begin with maybe a little to your background. If we’re correctly informed you were initially a goldsmith?
Harry Thaler: Yes, I spent 10 years working as goldsmith in my home town of Merano and then I moved briefly to Vienna before doing a jewellery course at the Hochschule für Gestaltung Pforzheim. And it was my time in Pforzheim which was then the motivation to move into design – so stoked the desire to work at larger scales.
(smow)blog: And so how did you then end up at the Royal College of Art in London?
Harry Thaler: After Pforzheim I initially studied design in Bolzano, until I gave that up for lets’ say “an English reason”. There was one course that I had to complete in English, and after I had failed eight times I thought “OK, you’ll have to go to London to learn English!” So I applied to the RCA, was accepted, studied there for two years, and established my studio here in London in 2010.
(smow)blog: Given your background in jewellery. As a designer do you work more with models and “hands-on” construction or are the first design steps on the computer?
Harry Thaler: It depends a lot on the project. I am currently working on a house, and that is naturally a lot of computer based work, but then there are projects such as Pressed Chair which never involved the computer and is the result of pure experimentation.
(smow)blog: Which brings us nicely to the next question! When we look at your earlier work, we can’t see any obvious path to Pressed Chair. Was it a completely new project for you, or is there a connection to your previous work?
Harry Thaler: I would say it is rooted in my earlier work, in that if I hadn’t worked as a goldsmith I would probably never have had the idea. Obviously the scale is completely different but, for example, forming pieces of sheet metal is a typical goldsmith process.
(smow)blog: And can you remember what the initial idea was? Was there a moment of inspiration, or….
Harry Thaler: While there are projects where you wake up and the idea is there, Pressed Chair was more a process. It started with a small fork made from one piece of wood, that was then developed further into a table, chair, stool made from one piece of wood and then came a sort of wooden wafer that was then bent to form a chair…..
(smow)blog:…… and then you thought, OK if it works with wood lets try with metal?
Harry Thaler: No, not exactly. The original plan was to make something out of just one material, which was ultimately metal. And once we had the basic form the next step was to develop it further so that the sheet was as thin as possible. If we were to take a 1cm thick piece of metal it would be much easier, so just bend it and that would be that with no need for the groove. But it is the groove that makes the chair what it is.
(smow)blog: And then the first meeting with Nils Holger Moormann?
Harry Thaler: That was in January 2011 in Cologne. I had won an Interior Innovation Award and Nils approached me at IMM.
(smow)blog: Did he already know the work or did he encounter it for the first time in Cologne?
Harry Thaler: He said that he’d been following it for some time, and I’ll never forget how he approached in Cologne, he came direct to me, no looking left or right. Just straight, focussed, to me!
(smow)blog: And how is it for you as a designer, you develop a chair, win prizes, then a company such as Moormann come and say “Great, we want to produce it. But we’ll have to make changes.” Is that something that makes you nervous, or uneasy?
Harry Thaler: No not at all! The cooperation with Moormann was excellent. They sent me pictures and I could see that it was in essence the same chair. They had made minor changes but the spirit was the same. And I was kept informed as to what was happening, it wasn’t the case that they just took it and did what they wanted without consulting me. They did a lot, but as I was kept informed and so could in effect accompany the process.
(smow)blog: And now, finally, it is on the market. Is the project for you now closed and your just waiting for the cheques to roll in, or is it still something that you think about, something that you still follow closely ?
Harry Thaler: The great thing about design is that maybe I’ll see the chair in a cafe here in London or in someone’s house, so somewhere where it has its own life. And when people take pleasure from the chair and really use it then that is something that makes me happy. But obviously I am also looking to develop the concept further into other objects such as a table or a stool.
Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler for Nils Holger Moormann
The Moormann stand in Milan was devoted to the new star in the Moormann stable. And done with a wonderful mix of biblical allegory and Hollywood glitz. In our humble opinion.
Posted in Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Fuorisalone, Interview, Milan Design Week, Moormann, Producer, Product Tagged with: Harry Thaler, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Pressed Chair
During the “Summaery” exhibition back in July 2011 we asked Professor Bernd Rudolf, Decan of the Architecure Department at Bauhaus Uni Weimar, about the motivations of the modern architecture student. “It is still the case”, he answered playfully, “that they all want to make the world a better place. That remains the principle reason for studying architecture…”
And designers ? Can designers make the world a better place? Do they even want to ? What motivates contemporary designers ?
At their 2012 design symposium the HFBK Hamburg attempted to find some answers to the question “Warum Gestalten ?” (Why Design ?)
Or at least move towards finding some answers.
To this end six professors from the HFBK design department each invited a design professional along who presented their view on design, the design process and for all why. The high-calibre line-up featuring Andrej Kupetz, Axel Kufus, Jaime Hayon, Nienke Klunder, Christoph Schäfer, Andreas Brandolini and Peter Kubelka.
(As a small administrative note: on account of the event “somewhat” over-running and our pressing need to catch a train to Berlin, we missed Peter Kubelka. And so his insights and opinions sadly aren’t included here.)
First up was the German Design Council’s CEO Andrej Kupetz. For us a good opening because as a “non-practicing designer” he spoke not about his own motivations but more about design in broader terms and where design can make a difference.
Why design? as is in “What’s the point?” rather than “This is why I do it”. As it were.
A large part of his presentation was concerned with materials in various contexts, and in particular what he referred to as the designers (old) dream of a weightless world. Of dematerialisation. Of producing products that require fewer resources.
The weightless world as a synonym for designers creating a better, sustainable, world. Of designers helping solve global problems. As a possible answer to the question “why”.
This dream, according to Andrej Kupetz, remains unfulfilled; largely because of industry.
Industry, so Kupetz, makes most of its money from product differentiation, be it in surfaces, colours or materials. Such suffocates innovation, and so original design, because it doesn’t bring the necessary finacial gains.
A view which fits very nicely with what a senior manager from a leading designer furniture producer told us had struck him about his visit to IMM Cologne 2012 – very few truly new products, but lots of producers who have developed their products further in terms of fabrics or colours.
Which of course raises the question who decides what is produced and what is not produced? Or perhaps put another way who decides which designs are realised ? A topic that was to become one of the underlying themes of almost all the presentations.
For Andrej Kupetz design is driven by marketing. The role of the designer being to help consumers straddle the obvious divide between belonging to a group and being individual. In a similar vein Christoph Schäfer brought in the concept of “Royal Participation” – where individuals are led to believe that they are playing a participatory role in a process. But are in fact just pawns in a much bigger game and all too often an innocent tool to help increase profits. Jaime Hayon spoke, with some passion, about his disdain for marketing analysts in the product design industry. The fixation with what consumers allegedly want limiting the producers vision, stifling new ideas and creating insecurity.
A scenario that would mean that most designers do little more than create what marketing departments dictate. Which could lead one to ask the designers. Why design?
Were the assembled designers not unanimous in their belief that the principle pre-occupation, or function if you like, of a designer is experimenting.
Commercial products are a desirable conclusion of the experiment. But not the raison d’etre of the experimentation.
Axel Kufus, for example, spoke of the workshop as being a laboratory, of products as being aggregates of processes. His former partner-in-crime Andreas Brandolini recalled how the Bellefast collective produced their own products to sell, explicitly to raise money to allow them to experiment. The products themselves had little or no meaning for their creators, although for the public they were the only tangible evidence of the designers work. In a similar context, one of Andrej Kupetz’s illustrations for a weightless world was Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler through Moormann. As we all know, a commercial product that is the result of experimenation by fantatics whose only motivation was seeing if it’s even possible. And which links in with something Axel Kufus said about designers creating processes rather than products.
Jaime Hayon, Nienke Klunder and Julia Lohmann at Warum Gestalten, HFBK Hamburg
Which all-in-all left us feeling a bit stuck in a sort of Penrose Triangle.
Industry needs design to make sure the profits keep rolling in. Designers can deliver the solutions. Which they do to pay the bills to allow them to experiment.
Society needs design to help it overcome problems. Designers can deliver the solutions. Because they experiment. Work for which they often aren’t directly paid for. But which they understand as their main function. In contrast to the public who understand designers as creators of commercial products.
Products which generate income for industry.
Naturally it did occur to us a couple of times during the afternoon that if less money was invested in producing sooooo many new chairs, tables and lamps to further flood an already over-saturated market, more designers could be paid to do the experimentation that not only potentially helps society but also produces truly innovative new chairs, tables and lamps that do more than generate extra waste.
But then we realised that was stupid. What would all the “design blogs” and glossy magazines write about?
And designers. Why do designers need design? Design for them may be experimentation. But what is the motivation? The drive?
A question which of course brings us back to Professor Rudolf. Are designers, like architects, motivated by a desire to change the world?
Jesko Fezer looked his guest Andreas Brandolini square in the eyes, “Why Design?”
“Because its fun!” replied Brandolini “I’m not happy when I have nothing to do!”
Loud applause from the assembled design students and professional designers.
Posted in Designer Tagged with: Axel Kufus, Hamburg, Harry Thaler, HFBK Hamburg, Jaime Hayon, Moormann, Pressed Chair, Warum Gestalten ?
A couple of years ago we were sat, late one Friday evening, in the kitchen in the Moormann Berge in Aschau, when Nils Holger Moormann came in.
He’d just returned from collecting a “German Design Prize” in Gold for Berge and enthused how, in comparison to other design prizes, winning the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland was like winning Olympic gold.
He may not have compared it to the Olympics, our memories may be fuzzy on that point. But it was certainly high praise.
And he was definitely beaming.
Established in 1969 the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland is Germany’s official national Design Prize and until now was administered and run by the German Design Council on behalf of the German Economics Ministry.
From 2012 it will be administered and run by DMY Berlin. Apparently a controversial decision.
At the launch press conference Secretary of State Hans-Joachim Otto from the Economics Ministry repeatedly stated that the decision to entrust DMY with the competition was definitely not a snub to the German Design Council.
And did so with a frequency and unmistakable “read my lips” clarity that indicated that someone’s nose had been put mightily out of joint.
Just how insulted the German Design Council feel can be perhaps be best seen in their decision to start their own competition, the German Design Award.
Or as we used to understand such decisions “If we can’t be striker, we’re taking our ball home and are going to play by ourselves”
There is, as far as we can see, absolutely no justification on the part of the German Design Council for starting their own competition; not least because it clouds the waters and hinders a clear and precise global presentation of the current quality in German design.
Which theoretically is something the German Design Council should be interested in.
German Design Award 2012: Not to be confused with the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland 2012
And not only the German Design Council seem put out by the decision.
One colleague at the press conference appeared very, very cross that the German Design Council were no longer running it; as far as we could make out because he was afraid it would now become too commercial. Would somehow lose the purity it has enjoyed until now.
Without wanting to openly challenge our colleagues competence on German design matters – something we suspect would end with us vanishing into the woods whimpering with our tales between our legs – he should probably have a look at the entry rules of the competition as organised by the German Design Council. And ask why the German Design Council felt obliged to start their own contest? Sour grapes and hurt pride aside.
And also look a little more critically at how the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland has performed of late under the German Design Council’s stewardship.
Something the Economics Ministry clearly have done.
While attempting to realign the GDCs proboscis, Secretary of State Otto also let it be known that the Ministry were the opinion that holding the prize ceremony during Ambiente had failed to provide the necessary resonance.
No disrespect to Frankfurt Messe. But Ambiente isn’t a design fair. It’s a home accessories and gift fair. The closest it gets to graphic design is probably wallpaper.
But the German Design Council are based in Frankfurt and often seem unable to think beyond the banks of the Main. For example, the “Foundation Board” for the new German Design Museum planned, admittedly, for Berlin is composed entirely of individuals from Frankfurt.
Presumably because the German Design Council aren’t aware of any competent individuals based in Berlin.
Had they been aware of a design festival based in Berlin, say Germany’s largest, we suspect they could have organised a co-operation with them earlier and held their awards ceremony and exhibition at least parallel to if not directly integrated into the DMY festival. A decision that would have a created a much larger media echo than that generated amongst the plates, towel racks and manicure products of Ambiente.
Watch this space for our report from inaugural “German Design Award” ceremony.
And then check google to see who else reports……
The Messeturm at Frankfurt Messe. Since January 2012 it houses the HQ of .... you've probably guessed (Photo: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Helmut Stettin )
We suspect the German Design Council’s devotion to all things Hessen may have been part of the reason for the decision to award the contract to DMY. If so they only have themselves to blame.
For our part we welcome the decision to give the competition to DMY Berlin.
At the press conference we heard the phrase “generation change” and that fits very well.
A lot of people are very scared of generation changes; but they are important if an organisation, event or relationship is to develop and master future challenges.
Speaking as we do to an awful lot of German designers, young and old, established and less so one often hears a criticism that the existing German design institutions focus too much on the “gute Form”, still operate in a world where Dieter Rams defines what German design is and for all that they spend to much time telling designers what they should be doing rather than helping them promote what they are actually doing.
Largely because the organisation is dominated by a generation who came through the ranks when that was the case. Which is fine. But today it isn’t the case. Which is also fine.
With DMY running the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland we expect that the competition will not only be a more contemporary affair; but will also be more democratic and open.
For all through the flat rate Euro 350,00 entry fee. A fee that in comparison to the thousands of euros winning design prizes usually costs should see a lot more smaller companies and design studios applying.
(Note to all who don’t know. Winning a design competition is very expensive. There is one, for example, where the winners are obliged to pay a Euro 2,800 “Winners fee” in addition to compulsory costs for catalogue entries. And of course the initial entrance fee. Which is obviously a barrier for anyone on a tight budget)
It is of course possible that DMY Berlin make a complete pigs breakfast of the competition and the whole thing is a disaster. That is always the risk when changing partner.
We’ll know by mid-May when details are announced of how many applications have been submitted, from whom and from which disciplines.
However looking at the concept as developed by DMY and comparing it to both what has gone before and all other design prizes in Germany we see a real chance to reinvigorate the Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland and so help German design and German designers better promote themselves in the global market.
As we say, if the German Design Council leave the ball where it is and accept their position on the wing….
Posted in Awards, Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, DMY Berlin, smow Tagged with: Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
Although it would be wrong to say that we misled you in saying that there would be no Moormann furniture at IMM Cologne.
There was one piece.
A brave, young Strammer Max
Not in Cologne however as representative of his designer or producer, but as the Global Ambassador of an idea so genial, so eye wateringly simple, so necessary, that we’re more than a little twisted with jealousy at not having thought it up ourselves: World Furniture Day.
Looking to put the fun back into furniture the forces behind World Furniture Day are overseeing a number of events on Sunday January 22nd to help us rediscover the bond between us and our furnishings.
Because, despite what the thousands of “trend researchers” currently combing their way through IMM Cologne looking for something, anything, to proclaim as “The” trend for autumn 2012 may say; furniture isn’t about trends and continual new collections.
Aspects of the furniture industry may want us to believe it is because they calculate that by convincing us that furniture is just fashion you can sit on they can increase their profits.
These people are charlatans.
Furniture is a life-long commitment. Not a weekend of lust until something fresher comes along.
The twin highlights of the inaugural World Furniture Day are a “Chair Slam” in Berlin and a Furniture Flashmob in Cologne. In the first the public are invited to bring along their chair and convince the public why there chair is the best.
And in the second the organisers invite us all to bring a chair to Cologne City Centre, and create a “Pop-up Living Room” next to the Cathedral.
But of course all are invited to organise their own, local, event and to celebrate as they wish.
And if not this year. Then maybe next.
Because speaking to the good Strammer Max it was clear that World Furniture Day will become an annual celebration of all that is good, fun and personal in furniture.
Or important might be a shorter way of putting it. And that the plans for World Furniture Day 2013 are well underway.
Fuller details and background information on World Furniture Day 2012 can be found at http://worldfurnitureday.com/
World Furniture Day 2012 representative Strammer Max in the IMM Cologne Press Room
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer, World Furniture Day Tagged with: Max Frommeld, Moormann, Strammer Max, world furniture day
Although officially a company fete at which Moormann wanted to thank their partners, dealers, designers et al for the good cooperation over the previous year; Die Hölle von Aschau was much more a family fest at which one could really feel the warmth that exists between the company and all they work with.
And that despite the sleet and wind.
This warmth was particularly evident as Nils Holger Moormann himself took to the track and was immediately surrounded by the sort of camera scrum more normally associated with George Clooney or Brad Pitt.
It was, genuinely, most touching.
In a week or so we’ll be in Cologne at IMM, in a world where hard deals are done on the purchase of leather sofas of questionable quality by over-confident reps in suits of an equally perfidious pedigree. Invariably this year using a tablet.
The Bookinist Cup was a reminder that it needn’t be so.
And we don’t just mean the fact that Vitra were a “sponsor”.
Guessing at what the whole exercise must have cost, we’re pretty certain that the money Moormann invested in Die Hölle von Aschau could easily have paid for a stand at a trade fair.
But knowing what we do about Nils Holger and his merry band of Moormänner we suspect that if it came to a direct choice between a trade fair or racing pieces of their furniture round a car park. The car park would win every time.
Something that is only possible in a world where it is understood that although profit is an unavoidable necessity; quality is the most important measure of success or failure. And that quality comes from having a real passion for what you do, about not seeing your occupation as mere work and from the fact that doing what you do makes you happy.
And so because it so eloquently reminded us that the designer furniture industry is something to be enjoyed, Die Hölle von Aschau wins a place in our highlights of 2011.
And for all who weren’t there. The official race film.
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Bookinist, Die Hölle von Aschau, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
Away from the race track a real highlight of “Die Hölle von Aschau” was the Concours d’Élégance.
Ahead of the event Moormann sent out miniature Bookinist kits to their clients, partners and chums with the request that they be “pimped” and returned.
If we’re honest we don’t think that they expected to get that many back.
And so they were genuinely all the more impressed with not only the response but the very high quality of the responses.
From a Gingerbread Bookinist over Popemobiles and onto something unspeakably coarse if equally cool from Jehs + Laub, the fantasy and artistic talent of Moormann’s extended family is clearly limitless.
It was truly a delight to behold. The full gallery can be viewed here
Die Hölle von Aschau 2011: Concours d'Élégance
A kit also arrived in the (smow)HQ.
(smow) of course wouldn’t be (smow) if they simply followed rules as laid down by others. Even when the “other” is Nils Holger Moormann.
And so, yes, (smow) customised a Bookinist kit. But (smow) customised a 1:1 scale Bookinist.
Constructed in the valley’s of south Sachsen by local craftsmen using traditional production methods and employing an environmentally friendly electric motor in contrast to Moormann’s ozone challenging, and quite frankly last century, diesel motors the (smow) Bookinist was ….
…. immediately disqualified from the race!
And that despite being filled with real books, rather than stickers on other race Bookinists we could mention!
However after several appeals the race jury graciously decided to create an extra category for exceptional examples of East German engineering and the (smow) team were finally allowed into the pit lane to prepare for battle.
When the time came, the hours of training proved invaluable on the tight Aschau track and under the jubilation of the gathered thousands the (smow)pilot brought his chariot home in a very respectable time of 1:17.65
Which in a fair and just world would have been 8th place.
And then as the rest of the participants partied the night away, (smow)racing were still out and about, improving their skills on the rain soaked cobblestones of Aschau.
Much as you’d expect…..
Die Hölle von Aschau 2011: The (smow) Bookinist takes shape.....
... a test round in the Moormann car park ....
.....before blitzing round the Bookinist Cup 2011 course.
Then while others dined on and with the other competitors ...
......(smow) kept on racing through the night.
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer, Product, smow Tagged with: Bookinist, Die Hölle von Aschau, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
Twenty four hours before Sebastian Vettel sealed his second F1 drivers title in Japan, Markus Jehs and Jürgen Laub were securing victory in an event that stands a vertical cliff face higher than F1 on Mount Motor Sport and to which Vettel himself hopes to ascend, once he gets a bit better at driving: The Bookinist Cup.
For many the Bookinist was developed as an armchair in which one could sit and read; surrounded by your favourite literature. This however is one of the crueler droplets in the marketing mist of deception that shrouds the global designer furniture industry.
Alone the style in which Nils Holger Moormann first presented his chariot at Milan in 2008 betrayed his real intentions.
However, as with so much of Moormann’s oeuvre, the glossy magazines and intern-heavy, content-light design blogs struggled to comprehend the true majesty of the creation; and so the company were forced to tone down the marketing and position the Bookinist as a family friendly product.
As something your granny could use.
Industry insiders and adrenaline junkies know better. And the more intractable of those answered Nils Holger Moormann’s challenge to combat.
The Challenger: Nils Holger Moormann
For the 2011 Bookinist Cup, twenty international teams gathered under the clock tower in front of the Festhalle in Aschau to do battle – with each other and with one of the most devious and unforgiving forms of transportation developed since someone foolishly thought the donkey “might be useful”.
With the first snow of winter taunting from the peaks of the Chiemgauer Alpen and dark clouds foreboding worse, a key factor was always going to be the weather. Fortunately Saint Medard meant well with the competitors – and it remained friendly for the majority of the race.
The dry track however not helping all, and the competition got off to a dramatic start when Team 1 “Tuktuk-Racing”, broke the Bookinist – poor skippering leading to a disagreement with the straw bales and ending with a separation of chassis and front wheel.
Fortunately, not only had the Mormann Design Team prepared two race Bookinists for the event. They can also weld. Quickly. And so after a short Safety Car period the competition could continue unhindered.
Following good times from Robert Widmann & David Fechner, Bibs Hosak-Robb & David Robb and Garbriele & Matthias von Schweinitz, Nils Holger Moormann himself entered the arena.
If euphoria ever knew limits; it made new acquaintances on a cold afternoon in south Bavaria.
Driving his personal Bookinist, a vehicle that he genuinely uses to travel to work every day, Nils’ challenge was unfortunately less triumphant than his reception on the start line, and he appeared hampered by a less than optimal performance from his engine. Although potentially it was more a problem that the wrong sort of fuel had been tanked. From track-side it was hard to tell.
With the challenger beaten, it was left to the last of the challengees to fight for the crown.
Erika and André Küchler did Switzerland proud, while Saskia Kaptein & Just Haasnoot successfully disproved many of the crowds unfavourable stereotypes concerning Dutch drivers.
But ultimately no one could master either the course nor the Bookinist with the skill, grace and steely nerve to match Stuttgart design studio Jehs and Laub.
The Bookinist was never a beast that took kindly to taming. There is no book “The Bookinist Whisperer” Nor do we imagine their ever will be.
And so respect to all who took on the Hell of Aschau and left the to tell their tale.
We salute you!
And yes Team(smow) were also present … but that’s a story for another day.
For the sake of completion, a list of all teams and times can be found at: www.die-hoelle-von-aschau.de
And the four prize winners were:
Fastest Racing-Team: Stuttgarter Höllenhunde (Markus Jehs & Jürgen Laub)
Best Stunt: Die Molitomähns (Frank Leukers &Jürgen Kupfer)
Sleekest Performance: Vatikan Racing – Der eilige Stuhl (Klaus Wolter & Mark Bruckmann)
Most Contact with the Straw Bales: Ratz-Fatz-Team (Alex Seifried & Stephan Scholl)
- The Challenger: Nils Holger Moormann
- Nils Holger Moormann on his way to Milan 2008
- The Safety Car
- Regular pit stops were essential to ensure top performance from the Bookinists...
- ... and the drivers
- Hase, or perhaps Bär, test their skills
- Die verrückten Holländer. Saskia Kaptein & Just Haasnoot
- André Küchler tastes the adrenalin. And likes it.
- Berlin in Aschau in Chiemgau: Axel Kufus, Valerie Otte and Christoffer Martens
- Hermann Jost from Tuktuk-Racing in the process of breaking the Bookinist.
- Naturally all up and coming designer furniture producers wanted to be associated with the event....
- Its motor racing ... not bull fighting
- The two most important safety tools in Aschau
- Die Hölle von Aschau: The Course
- Team Ueli cut a good figure on the start ....
- .... but not as good as Nils Holger Moormann
- Nils Holger Moormann on the course. Questions will be raised about how well-tuned his engine was.
- Nils Holger Moormann bathes in the public adulation
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer, Product Tagged with: Bookinist, Die Hölle von Aschau, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
As we stood in a cold-storage centre in west Vienna looking at Ljod by Copa, somehow we knew it was also training for the rapidly approaching winter.
We just didn’t realise how quickly it would come.
A mere 72 hours later we found ourselves standing on the station platform at Prien in Chiemgau. Air temperature 4 degrees.
By the time we reached Aschau, the first snow of the winter was busy dusting the tops of the Chiemgauer Alpen.
And we began considering if it wasn’t, slowly, time to swap our shorts for full length trousers.
The first snow of winter on the Kampenwand in Aschau
Arriving at our accommodation the landlady asked us what had brought us to deepest Bavaria; “We’re here to photograph furniture”, we half lied.
“Ahh at Moormann” she replied.
There are a couple of other furniture making companies in Aschau; but somehow it was extremely comforting to hear that the locals consider the products of Nils Holger Moormann the only ones worth travelling half way across Europe to photograph.
If we’re honest we were only there to photograph one piece of Moormann furniture.
And not in a context for which it was originally intended.
However we couldn’t really explain that to our landlady. And not just on account of our frozen brains.
We’ll explain more later, once we’ve finished organising the photos and videos, but for now here is a picture of a Moormann Bookinist wonderfully re-created in gingerbread by the team from Neue Werkstätten, Munich.
We hope that’s not given you too much of a clue….
Posted in Designer, Moormann, Producer Tagged with: Bookinist, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
Nils Holger Moormann
At Fuori Salone Milano 2011 we helped Moormann construct their stand. And of course took the opportunity to chew the fat a little with company founder and eponym Nils Holger Moormann.
Variously described as being an autodidact, pioneer or provocateur, for us Nils Holger Moormann is simply pleasant company and the guarantee of well considered and soundly opinionated discussion.
In the course of the Milan interview we covered the new products, the current state of the furniture industry and, appropriately enough given what awaits us in October, the point of trade fairs.
smow: As a furniture producer does one have to go to trade fairs and, in particular, is it worth coming to Milan?
Nils Holger Moormann: That is always the central question; however, for us Milan is always worth it because we have a lot of export business and so here we can meet those customers who we otherwise perhaps wouldn’t get a chance to meet in the course of the year. The main problem is that it is very difficult to get a space in Milan, and we only have this tiny stand. Every year we fight to get a bigger stand, and every year we don’t ….
smow: … but you’ve never considered moving from the fair grounds into the city?
Nils Holger Moormann: … no not really because interesting as Milan is, it is currently on the verge of lunacy, with so many fringe events that a normal person can’t see them all. And when we undertake such a project then with heart and soul. Every detail here has been considered in great detail; it looks very simple, but isn’t, and every detail needs to be perfect. And then to potentially only have very few visitors would be tragic, but here at the fair you have the guarantee that both visitors and the international press will be here.
smow: How much Nils Holger Moormann exists in such a stand. Do you take a personal interest, or …
Nils Holger Moormann: Every year we have the same problem; Finding a theme. Personally I think it is especially important to tell a good story that links the stand with the company. And developing this story is the most difficult part because it must have some relation to us, it can’t just be “show” And, this year as with every year we were absolutely convinced that we would be given a larger stand, and planned the concept accordingly. And then came the information – no once again the smaller. And that was a shock.
And so we needed a new idea and that did indeed come from me. I was inspired by the fact that everyone is only interested in new products – which I find interesting but also idiotic, because furniture needs time. It must be refined and gradually perfected. Furniture design involves a lot of thought and consideration. And with this quick, quick, new, new one has the risk that we become like the fashion industry with two, three, four collections per year. And that can’t be. And so we thought OK we can play along and so we’re presenting 12 new products here but the majority sadly can’t be seen because they are from 2028 or “undefined future” or so. What I like is to create unfamiliar situations where visitors stare, aren’t sure if its serious or not. And that for me is just as important as good products.
Minimato by Matthias Ferwagner for Nils Holger Moormann
smow: But there are 2 real new products.
Nils Holger Moormann: Yes, or at least one and a half. We have a small side table called Minimato which was relatively simple to bring to production, and so our principle focus now is a, for us, very unconventional piece. For the past couple of years I wanted to do more sheet metal furniture. Most people have probably forgotten but 15 years ago we basically only made sheet metal furniture. I find the material very interesting and we were introduced to a piece called Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler, a young Südtiroler who studied in London, that fascinates not only me but the whole company – although we all know that the risk involved is gargantuan. There is so much technical engineering involved that one is working at the limits.
But we all want it to work and we have organised a network of eccentrics to help us; because to work on such project you can’t think within normal constraints. Its not a contract where we can go to someone and say “Make us the chair” rather you need someone who says “It’ll never work, but we can for a beer if you want!” And money isn’t involved, just lots of socialising, and then one starts trying to gently talk them round. And eventually they also become infected by the project. And that makes it a lot more fun when one approaches such things in an unconventional way rather than simply taking some money and paying a producer. With us its like an insane mountaineering expedition. But that’s the fun.
smow: And are you personally regularly in the workshop….
Nils Holger Moormann: …permanently. It’s the only option. The person working on it is friend of mine who has a very, very small company but a wonderful network of specialists who help out. And it is with all things that you do because you are fascinated and interested by, it becomes more like a hobby and then you start working through the night because you don’t realise any more what time it is.
Which is the difference to when you only work for money, where you eventually start wanting to do other things.
But until now its all gone very well, but let’s wait and see! I actually phoned him yesterday because I got a little nervous. There’s always new problems! Its a bit like climbing Mount Everest with two crates of beer and no oxygen….
Pressed Chair by Harry Thaler for Nils Holger Moormann
smow: … but that’s probably easier because then you don’t notice you’ve no oxygen…
Nils Holger Moormann:.. That could be true.
smow: And when the risk doesn’t pay off…
Nils Holger Moormann: Then so be it! I believe that one of the reasons that furniture firms are so boring today is because they only do “show” and let the world know how wonderful, colourful and crazy they are. And here we find the chair, absolutely, indisputably … basic. For us it’s important. There’s no “show”
And yes there is a risk that you fail. But that’s the kick.
If everybody could produce such a chair, it wouldn’t be any fun!
And I don’t want to give up is this feeling of undertaking an unconventional tour, with unconventional methods, but then still arriving at our destination.
But in this case we are as certain as we can be that we’ll make it.
Posted in Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Fuorisalone, Fuorisalone Milan Design Week, Interview, Moormann, Producer, smow in Milan Tagged with: Harry Thaler, Matthias Ferwagner, Minimato, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann, Pressed Chair
Once a month we visit a trade fair.
We don’t always want to – but we always have to.
We look at furniture. We think up some cheap jokes. We take some out of focus photos. We come home.
But what is actually involved in organising a trade fair stand? How important are trade fair stands? Is our weak humour and poor photography disrespectful?
In an attempt to try to answer these and similar questions we helped Moormann with the construction of their stand at Milan 2011
Although “helped” is stretching things a little.
The secret plan....
The Moormänner had planned four days for the construction of the stand. We joined them on day three.
The outer structure of the stand was, as one would expect from Moormann, an uncomplicated wooden construction. The walls formed from black cloth.
When we arrived on the Sunday morning all this was, thankfully, in place. Our contribution was assisting with the construction of the ca. 3.5 x 5 metre FNP unit that was to form the backwall of the stand.
The principle problem for Moormann however was not the stand construction itself, but rather the somewhat late confirmation as to how large their space would be.
“As with every year we were absolutely convinced that we would be given a larger stand and planned the concept accordingly”, explains Nils Holger Moormann. “And then came the information – no, once again the smaller. And that was a shock.”
Not least because some three months of planning had already been invested in the stand design concept. The confirmation of the actual size came just 10 days before show begin.
And so a new plan was quickly hewn by Nils Holger Moormann personally, “I was inspired by the fact that everyone is only interested in new products – which I find interesting but also idiotic, because furniture needs time. It must be refined and gradually perfected. Furniture design involves a lot of thought and consideration. And with this quick, quick, new, new one has the risk that we become like the fashion industry with two, three, four collections per year. And that can’t be”
And so in a typical Moormann response the Milan 2011 stand presented 12 new products. The majority of which however were shrouded in blankets. Not being ready until 2028. At the earliest. Allegedly.
“What I like is to create unfamiliar situations where visitors stare, aren’t sure if it’s serious or not. And that for me is just as important as good products.”
Konrad Lohöfener and Christian Neumeier, the two Moormänner charged with realising Nils Holger’s concept are in real-life designers employed by Moormann in the product development department. Employed as it were to help transform good designs into mass-producible furniture.
An unseen and unglamorous, if critical, aspect of the designer furniture industry.
In Milan, however, Konrad and Christian’s thoughts were less occupied with the next generation of Moormann products and more with making sure one of the company’s best sellers was straight.
And in their attention to detail one sees what separates Homo sapiens ssp. designer from the rest of the animal kingdom.
On several occasions a point was reached where would have said it was OK.
And Konrad and Christian adjusted further until it truly was.
With the heat in Milan Trade Fair Hall 20 becoming ever more unbearable – lest we forget the temperature outside was some 31 degrees, and that in early April – the final tasks for the day were cabling up the Rosi lamps to the FNP and attaching the company logo to the front of the stand. No easy task 5 meters above ground level and after several hours climbing ladders, moving scaffolding and assembling a 17 square meter shelving unit.
But is the effort all worth it?
For Nils Holger Moormann the answer is a resounding yes. “We have a lot of export business and so here we can meet those customers who we otherwise perhaps wouldn’t get a chance to meet in the course of the year.”
But have they never considered leaving the limited space and inflexibility of the Trade Fair behind for their own space in the city; a space where they can have more planning security?
The No is equally resounding
“Every detail here has been considered in great detail; it looks very simple, but isn’t, and every detail needs to be perfect. And then to potentially only have very few visitors would be tragic, but here at the Fair you have the guarantee that both visitors and the international press will be here.”
Having invested our own sweat in the project, we can only concur: we ‘d also be pretty gutted if the stand wasn’t seen and appreciated by as many people as possible. And that’s without us having any financial interest in its success or failure!
And so after some eight and half hours as honorary Moormänner and with our work done for the day, we bid our farewells and headed downtown for a much deserved, and longingly anticipated, cold beer. Or four.
Sitting in the train we reflected a little on our day, and although we can’t guarantee that in the future our photos will be better, or that our jokes will be funny, we do promise to be much more respectful of the effort and time invested in creating such a stand.
- The secret plan....
- Reaching high with Moormann in Milan
- Inspecting the developing FNP
- ...getting there...
- But is it straight?
- FNP by Axel Kufus from Nils Holger Moormann
- Moormann in Milan. Its only rock and roll but we like it...
- FNP and Rosi. A dream pair!
- The completed FNP...
- His stamp is his guarantee!
- Moormänner.... The spirits of the night
Posted in Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Milan Design Week, Moormann, Producer, Product Tagged with: Axel Kufus, FNP, Moormann, Nils Holger Moormann
A quick tram and S-Bahn ride from Rundgang at the Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weißensee brought us to Rundgang at Universität der Künste Berlin.
Similar concept. Different worlds.
We've said it before and we'll say it again: Good design needn't be complicated....
Whereas Weißensee exudes an almost parochial innocence, the UdK feels like The New York School of the Performing Arts in the early 1980s.
At any minute a nimble framed, leotard and leg-warmer attired youth could leap down the stairs and complain about Mr. Shorofsky not understanding the modern world before pirouetting off down the corridor.
Or at least that’s how it feels to us.
However, despite the retro surroundings the students of the Industrial Design Department always impress with their contemporary and forward looking work.
One of the more interesting and innovative projects was without question Scolyt by Marco Merkel realised as part of the TransRitus seminar from Prof. Axel Kufus & Jörg Höltje. Inspired by the glass forms that resulted from the 1944 allied bomb attacks on Berlin, Marco set out to “create” random glass objects using naturally occurring wood shapes as the template. Having collected samples of wood Marco blew the glass forms either over the surface or, much more intriguingly, within the wood. The results were transfixing.
Less mesmerising, but equally as good was the stool Nimmdirzeit (Have a Break) by Christian Leisse and Josua Putzke. We’re not entirely sure from course it arose – however in essence it is a stool in the form of an old-fashioned hourglass and which measures time spans of 15 minutes.
Not perhaps an object for the home, however in an office, or even better in a public space, the concept and idea behind Nimmdirzeit, namely your seat measures how long you have been sitting and so allows you to relax and enjoy the break without having to keep checking your watch really appeals to us.
Nimmdirzeit by Christian Leisse and Josua Putzke as seen @ Rundgang 2011 Universität der Künste Berlin
We just fear that some modern management freak will eventually misuse Nimmdirzeit and incorporate it in a completely pointless and pride draining training session that involves all staff members having 15 minutes in which to present their ideas for the coming sales campaign. While the rest of the group clap.
It’s much better suited to relaxing in park on your lunch break.
A final highlight was seeing Erika by Storno for Nil Holger Moormann. The project had absolutely nothing to do with the Rundgang, but since Moormann discontinued it there has been a small hole in our hearts. Some would say such a modular kitchen concept was never likely to be a commercial success.
And we’d agree.
But that’s also the point.
The concept was and is a successful attempt at defining domestic arrangements in our modern world.
Erika was a solution.
Others do it differently.
It was just lovely to see it again in its full glory.
As with our visit to the KHB we didn’t take advantage of the UdK Rundgang to view the works of the non-Industrial Design department. On the one hand that would have involved walking to an another building.
And on the other there was some pints of Brown Ale with our names on them waiting at Hops and Barely in Berlin Friedrichshain.
Well deserved Brown Ales after two student shows in one day.
And with the final stage of tour still ahead of us; a Sunday afternoon at Burg Giebichenstein Halle.
We’ve created a small facebook gallery from Rundgang 2011 Universität der Künste Berlin at facebook.com/smowcom
An object from the project Scolyt by Marco Merkel as seen @ Rundgang 2011 Universität der Künste Berlin
Posted in Designer, Exhibitions and Shows, Moormann, Producer, smow campus tour Tagged with: Axel Kufus, Erika, Moormann, Storno
Not a phrase normally associated with (smow)
To the best of our knowledge no (smow)employee has ever smashed an iPad or capped a WiFi service in protest at the creeping and increasingly obsessive proliferation of technology into our lives.
Despite that, the early summer weeks in the (smow)HQ were dominated by the preparation and production of the very first (smow)catalogue.
That’s print catalogue.
So on paper.
Au contraire nos amis!
Not only is the production of such an analogue catalogue technologically more challenging than coding with that “any-fool-can-do” HTML; but, just as the mechanisation of the textile mills offered the oppressed masses their first, golden, taste of leisure time – so does a print catalogue help us to regain that.
Turn off the computer, enjoy a break, peruse a catalogue. And then turn the computer back on and order.
In addition to featuring a selection of products from the (smow) range the (smow) Designer Furniture Catalogue 2011 also includes biographical information on some of the most important designers and a range of specially commissioned photos of products from USM Haller, Vitra, Moormann, Richard Lampert et al
And is a mighty fine piece of work. Well done to all involved!
If you’d be interested in seeing the finished work, or know someone who would appreciate a copy, please contact email@example.com (NOTE: It is only available in German)
And at facebook.com/smowcom we have posted a photo gallery documenting the production process.
(smow) Designer Furniture Catalogue 2011
Posted in Artemide, Cassina, Fritz Hansen, Kartell, Knoll, Magis, Moormann, Producer, Richard Lampert, smow, USM Haller, Vitra, Wilde + Spieth Tagged with: Artemide, cassina, Eiermann Childrens Desk, Eiermann Table, Eiermann table frame, fritz hansen, jonas & jonas, kartell, Knoll, Magis, Moormann, Richard Lampert, USM Haller, Vitra
Name: Christoffer Martens
Born: Bremen, 1975
Alma mater: Product Design, University of Applied Science, Potsdam
Internships: Alfredo Häberli, Zürich
Siebenschläfer for Nils Holger Moormann, Aschau im Chiemgau
Spross for Nils Holger Moormann, Aschau im Chiemgau
Obstrutsche for emform, Bockhorn
(smow)blog: How did you arrive at product design?
Christoffer Martens: I initially trained as a graphic designer and then worked in a media agency for a few years. However over the years I moved ever more towards objects and designing objects and eventually started studying in Potsdam
(smow)blog: And why Potsdam?
Christoffer Martens: At that time Potsdam had just completed the construction of new workshop, it’s also in a fairly quiet location, and so for me offered excellent conditions for studying. And then the proximity to Berlin also made it very attractive, because Berlin is a city that lives and breathes “design”.
(smow)blog: What was the most important lesson that you learned in Potsdam?
Christoffer Martens: The college in Potsdam isn’t focused on one design direction, rather there is a broad spectrum of possibilities and the advantage is that as a designer you can find your own direction and form your own opinions. And I found and indeed still find that important so that you can talk and argue about and over design.
(smow)blog: You also spent some time in Zürich with Alfredo Häberli?
Christoffer Martens: Yes, I did a six month internship with Häberli and was directly involved with his design team. Which was a wonderful experience and one from which I learned an awful lot. I observed, for example, how a professional studio functions, how Häberli brings character to his objects and how he sells his products. In context of the complete student years, the internship probably helped the most in terms of understanding what product design actually means.
(smow)blog: And so you would recommend such internships?
Christoffer Martens: Yeah, I can strongly recommend internships. Especially in established design offices where one – in the best case – works with interesting clients, or on interesting projects.
Buchhalter - new from Christoffer Martens
(smow)blog: And you have also worked with Thonet?
Christoffer Martens: Yes, Thonet were the co-operation partner for my final year project. The topic was flexible tables, and I experimented a lot with Thonet at their factory in Frankenberg. There are few interesting ideas from that project which I am still developing.
(smow)blog: Your most commercially successful product is currently the bed Siebenschläfer for Moormann. What is the background to Siebenschläfer?
Christoffer Martens: As a project Siebenschläfer began before my studies and then came over an indirect route to Moormann. Here in Gallery erstererster we host regular guest lectures and one of our speakers was Peter Unzeitig, who has products with Moormann. Peter found Siebenschläfer so good he said he wanted to show it to Moormann; who then also fell in love with it. And before I knew where I was I had a product with one of the most important producers in Germany. And for that I will always be thankful to Peter.
(smow)blog: How was the cooperation with Moorman?
Christoffer Martens: That was so simple. The design was more or less taken on as presented. Over the years variations and add-ons have been developed such as the kid’s bed Spross on the Siebenschläfer shelf, but for a young designer it was certainly a perfect start in the world of design production, because with his unorthodox style Nils Holger Moormann make everything so easy…
(smow)blog: And the name?
Christoffer Martens: That was suggestion from Moorman, and I wasn’t really party to the process. If I remember correctly at that time they had Siebenschläfers [dormice] in the attic and that was that…. [laughs]
(smow)blog: What are you working on at the moment?
Christoffer Martens: At the moment I’m principally working on two lamp projects. I wanted to move a little away from furniture and I currently have a fascination for a certain type of lamp and so am working on a couple of projects which I hope to be able to present in 2011, possibly in Milan.
(smow)blog: And generally, where do you see your future
Christoffer Martens: I don’t believe that it is possible to plan too far in the future. And although I am always open for new projects in other design area, I am currently very happy with product design and hope to be able to bring further interesting products on to the market.
More information on Christoffer Martens can be found at www.christoffer-martens.de/
Siebenschläfer by Christoffer Martens for Nils Holger Moormann
Kids bed Spross by Christoffer Martens for Nils Holger Moormann
Obstrutsche by Christoffer Martens for emform
Buchhalter by Christoffer Martens
Potbase by Christoffer Martens
Posted in Designer, Interview, Moormann, Producer, smow, smow Introducing Tagged with: Christoffer Martens, Moormann, Siebenschläfer, Spross, Thonet
While critics denounce such as an easy and obvious way to generate content – for us reviewing the past year is an important step in planning our activities for the coming year: where to go, who to talk to, what to sit on and, just as importantly, what to ignore or give up.
The only real problem for us is that in preparing such we realise just how much material we haven’t had the chance to use – and so receive an impression of how much more material we will acquire in the coming year.
Reading Table by Uli Budde @ Designers Fair 2010 Cologne
The year started, as ever, with IMM and Designers Fair in Cologne. Aside from the opportunity to roll out a few anti-carnival gags the trip introduced us to some wonderful new products/designers, specifically; Uli Budde, Christian Lessing, Martin Neuhaus, Alexander Gufler, maigrau, Tim Baute etc, etc, etc…
A further highlight was the introduction of Herbert Hirche’s Interbau 57 armchair through Richard Lampert.
Negative was the lack of innovation and – if we’re honest – quality on display at IMM. For Germany’s most important furniture trade fair it just simply wasn’t good enough.
Let’s see what IMM 2011 brings.
In February we were then on much safer ground with the opening of the VitraHaus on the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein and a visit to the MoormannHaus in Aschau in Chiemgau.
Moormann Haus, Aschau in Chiemgau
Aside from the way the VitraHaus majestically appears before you, for us the real joy is the decision to include “non-Vitra” items in the displays – very much in the spirit of Charles and Ray Eames‘ “Collage” principle of interior design.
If we did have one wish for 2011 it would be that rather than only including established designers, that Vitra include one or the other design from a young designer or two in the VitraHaus exhibition space.
VitraHaus is big enough to give young talent a chance.
While the MoormannHaus is every bit as spectacular a piece of architecture as Vitra’s, the real highlight of the trip to Aschau was Berge – the Moormann auberge
Much more than a delightful base for a trip to the Bavarian Alps – Berge is much more a wonderful introduction to the Moormann philosophy.
In March (smow)airport systems premiered their range of USM Haller based airport solutions at the Passenger Terminal Expo 2010 in Brussels. Created in cooperation with USM Haller , (smow) airport systems have developed a range of solutions for both operative, Lounge and Retail areas of airports – solutions that were very well received by the PTE visitors.
The company name and structure may have changed since PTE 2010 but we will be at PTE 2011 in Copenhagen to both follow the development of the project as well as to report on other developments in airport / public area furniture world.
Full house in the (smow)room for the Leipzig Buchmesse readings
Back in Leipzig March is Buchmesse and March 2010 saw the most successful series of readings ever in the (smow)room in Burgplatz.
Starting with Grillsaison from Philipp Kohlhöfer and then moving on over “New voices from Switzerland” to “Meine Frau will einen Garten” by Gerhard Matzig the three readings provided three very different if equally enjoyable experiences.
More so in 2011 !
Posted in Airport design, Buchmesse, designers fair, Exhibitions and Shows, imm cologne, Passenger Terminal Expo, Producer, Richard Lampert, USM Haller, Vitra, Weil am Rhein Tagged with: Alexander Gufler, Charles and Ray Eames, Christian Lessing, designers fair, herbert hirche, imm, imm cologne, imm köln, maigrau, martin neuhaus, Moormann, Passenger Terminal Expo, Richard Lampert, Tim Baute, Uli Budde, USM Haller, Vitra, vitrahaus