Hella Jongerius / Jongeriuslab
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Rotterdam, The Netherlands    
In 2004 Hella Jongerius was comissioned by Nymphenburg porcelain manufactory in Munich - almost in walking distance to Beinghunted's former base - to design a collection of tableware. The resulting "Sketches" collection is unique in its purpose to emphasize the process of its production, the handcrafted character of the pieces. Each plate is unique, its decor showing various sketches - taken from the company's century old archive - and painting styles which are applied in the different stages of manufacture.

While most of the items and products of our daily use are designed to be 'complete' and 'perfect', Hella Jongerius' work for Nymphenburg demonstrates that not just the finished product, which of course, is perfect no matter what, but also the sketches for it and the craftsmanship involved are of equal importance.

When looking through Hella Jongerius' archive the concept of challenging common concepts of fine art, design and production are very apparent. The description of her project for Vitra, the "Office Pets", explains these concepts and the artist's ideas:

"Office Pets not only provide office staff a light-hearted escape from their tightly organised office life, but also represent a new stage in design. Jongerius as it were pushes a slowly developed phenomenon beyond its 'natural' boundaries. In the last half century the word 'functionality' has practically lost its original instrumental meaning.

Contemporary design is concerned with image, context, meanings and messages rather than immediate utility and use. In 2007 we ask so much more from products than the serviceability that was the central feature of industrial design at the beginning of the 20th century. Appliances also feed our minds and our imagination, we feel a need to cherish them as if they were living beings. This shift in the significance of design has led the profession in many respects to seek support from the visual arts professions..." [read on]

Text: Beinghunted | Photos: © Jongeriuslab. All rights reserved.

At the Jongeriuslab website you will find a wide spectrum of Hella Jongerius' work, as well as detailed descriptions for a selection of her projects. Her most recent project for Cibone, Tokyo is featured in the February issue of Huge Magazine.

For more information visit: Jongeriuslab