Hella Jongerius: Craftsmanship in Industrial Design

Four Seasons

Year: 2007
Material: Porcelain, glaze, hand-painted decorations, fabric, embroidery
Dimensions: Various, highest point of jug: 26 cm
Commission: Nymphenburg, München
Production: Nymphenburg
Category: Unlimited production
Collection: Stedelijk Museum ‘s Hertogenbosch

A celebration of handicraft, materials and narrative deco­ration. The sculpted heads on the four items have been taken from the Nymphenburg archives: Bacchus, Flora, Ceres and Pompona, representing the four seasons.

Designer Hella Jongerius (1963) has become known for the special way she fuses industry and craft, high and low tech, tradition and the contemporary.


After graduating Eindhoven Design Academy in 1993 she started her own design company, Jongeriuslab, through which she produces her own projects and projects for clients such as Maharam (New York), KLM (The Netherlands), Vitra (Basel), IKEA (Sweden) and Royal Tichelaar Makkum (The Netherlands).


Shippo Plates

Year: 2007
Material: Copper, enamel
Dimensions: Plate # 1: 3.5 x Ø 19.5 cm, plate #2: 4 x Ø 19.5 cm, plate #3: 3 x Ø 24 cm, plate #4: 3.5 x Ø 30.5 cm, plate #5: 6 x Ø 42 cm
Commission: Cibone, Tokyo
Production: Cibone and Frozen Fountain
Category: Unlimited production

A contemporary interpretation of an almost lost craft: ‘shippo cloisonné’ or ‘enamel’. The piece not only reinterprets old deco­rations, but also employs untreated copper, which will eventually turn black /green.

Hella Jongerius works at the intersection of craft and industrial design, focussing specifically on the imperfections, or the human element in design. Her work is concerned with facilitating a relationship between an object and a human being. Here she also shows how design reflects the human condition, a condition which is often fragile. Jongerius also talks about the connections that design creates.

Embroidered Tablecloth

Year: 1999
Material: Linen, cotton, earthenware
Dimensions: 80 x 120 cm
Commission: Initiated by the designer
Production: Jongeriuslab
Category: Limited edition
Collection: Textielmuseum Tilburg, Stedelijk Museum ’s Hertogenbosch, FNAC, Puteaux, Musée de Rochechouart, FRAC, Dunkerque, Art Institute of Chicago, private collections, collection of the designer

Decoration is reintroduced as a meaningful component in design. The merging of plate and cloth, which results from the embroidery, distorts the functionality of both items and can be considered a comment on the link between functional objects and compulsory conventions (eating). The patterns of the flower and the dragon are inspired by 14th- and 15th-century Ming vases in the Museum Het Princessehof in Leeuwarden.

Her work has been shown at museums and galleries such as the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum (New York), MoMA (New York), the Design Museum (London), Galerie KREO (Paris) and Moss gallery (New York).

Blizzard Bulbs

Year: 2002
Material: Gas tanks, glass
Dimensions: 48 x Ø 29 cm, 46 x Ø 44 cm, 65 x Ø 51 cm
Commission: The Frozen Fountain, Amsterdam
Production: Jongeriuslab
Category: Limited edition
Collection: Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, private collections, collection of the designer (A.P.)

Unique hand-blown glass pieces are combined with a common refillable gas container. Blizzard Bulbs represent a synthesis of handicraft and industrial utility. The project was initiated by the Amsterdambased design gallery /shop Frozen Fountain. Subsequently the Bulbs were picked up by Galerie kreo in Paris, which focuses on the presentation of ex­peri­mental designs created by a select group of designers.

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Comment by alice simpson on July 23, 2014 at 12:43pm

Hella,

Your work is wonderfully inventive and beautifully interpreted. You have put all the right materials together.

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Masthead Credits

Leah Hardy, Laramie, Wyoming

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Mixed media sculpture based on my son Ky's childhood.
Copper, earthenware, encaustic, mica, teeth, resin, patina.
10.5" x 14" x 8"

2008-09

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