26 Mar Margriet Vollenberg and Margo Konings: The Future of Design; A Continuous Evolution
Though we blossom from past experiences and we are living in the present, we were asked to give our opinion about the future of design. In itself, this already seems to reflect an essence of what design is. A continuous evolution, developing by looking at the past, indulging in the now and growing into the future.
Current design is both commercial and creative and attracts great attention amongst all sorts of people worldwide. Designers have come a long way and have worked hard to attract this remarkable and widespread interest in design, which has proven to have many positive effects on the design world. But being overly dependent on commercial sponsorships and great amounts of attention also carries the danger of casting a shadow on blooming creativity, cultural relevance and conceptual thinking.
The world seems hungry for a more daring focus on creative processes, substance and the content of design, and that is what we want to put forward and what challenges us as a base for our selection processes. In recent history, design tended to be about bling-bling and big, bigger, biggest. There was little focus on the background behind the pieces, the roots, how the pieces matured to their final destinations, and what their cultural relevance was. We are interested in bringing things back down to earth a bit, and telling stories of how works end up the way they do, or don’t. But this doesn’t mean that we find more commercial works less relevant. This is perfectly illustrated by Maarten Baas’ Real Time series that has proven its cultural relevance; some pieces of the most expensive, limited editions of this series can only be found in important museums, like for example the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and major private collections. While another, unlimited, piece from this same series can be downloaded, in a down to earth, commercial version; as an iPhone application, by almost everybody in the world for only €0.79
For us the future of design lies not only in challenging the beholder by presenting strong examples of commercial and cultural design side by side, but also in continuously searching for challenging design. Like we noticed that process is now a priority for many of today’s designers, we try to keep recognising new priorities in designers’ works, and finding new perspectives and challenges in the world of design. More at Hiatus.