Experimental Designs from Denmark
The Mindcraft Project has launched a digital exhibition with ten designers and studios curated from Denmark. SCALE puts the focus on the designs and the designers.
The digital exhibition opened to the public on March 17 2021 on mindcraftproject.com. The combination of the words ‘Mind’ and ‘Craft’ highlights the essence of the selected designers and studios in The Mindcraft Project 2021. Experimental, forward-thinking, and conceptual design approaches blend with excellent craftsmanship and material knowledge.
The curated selection in The Mindcraft Project 2021 stretches across new digital fabrication methods and traditional refined craftsmanship, presenting ten pioneering designers and studios with individual designer pages, videos, AR, and a 3D experience. Designs ranging from a pinewood chair that brings an artistic simplicity to products that aid and support the human body, part of an ongoing series of furniture studies by Copenhagen-based Archival Studies to Textile Veneer by Copenhagen-based Else-Rikke Bruun that has merged contemporary production techniques and traditional weaving practices into a piece of spatial furniture that immediately catches the eye.
“In these critical times, there is an urgent need to find new solutions. We believe that artistic and experimental design practices serve as fundamental research in society, inspiring new ways of thinking, making, consuming, and living. The designers in The Mindcraft Project are characterised by their experimental approaches, strong artistic concepts, and a remarkable understanding of materials,” say Anders Kongskov and Kristian Kastoft, the two Co-Directors of The Mindcraft Project.
In 2021, due to the current international limitations and constraints, The Mindcraft Project launched a digital exhibition format for the second time, with the digital exhibition shown on mindcraftproject.com thus making it available for international viewing.
Join us for a look through the 10 products:
Suspense operates as a functional object, with a poetic sculptural configuration having a sense of spatial interaction and relevance. This merging of poetry and function is highlighted by the weaving of stainless-steel fibres – the electrical wiring component of a lamp, utilising it as a running line that defines this sculptural composition.
Made of brass, stainless steel thread and LED light source this composition of Suspense by Danish designer Kasper Kjeldgaard utilises a mix of positive and negative space to redefine the connection of objects to their spatial environment.
Suspense eliminates the need for functional interference, instead of transforming the electrical wire into an artistic centrepiece. The work operates both as abstract sculptural work, and as a more classical piece of design with an architectural relevance to space and form.
Textile Veneer displays the lightness and fluidity of textiles, translated through CNC milled plywood strands that simply slot together without the need of screws or glue. This simple, yet technically complex composition undulates across space, creating a piece that interacts with light and shadow. With inspiration coming in the form of traditional Mexican weaving techniques, the work presents a functional daily object with a unique combination of material and form.
Made of birch plywood, birch airplane plywood, oil, pigment, Textile Veneer utilises CNC milling technology, with the birch plywood structure simply slotting together, allowing flexibility in the formed structure; individual units can be formed into curvaceous environments or linked together to create larger spaces. This flexibility imitates the Japanese typology of spatial planning – traditional screens and removable walls that allow alternative functions within a single space.
Copenhagen-based architect and designer Else-Rikke Bruun is fascinated by the accumulation of knowledge present in craft practices passed down through generations, and she views her work as an important step in creating new traditions that merge the past and the future.
This chair is part of an ongoing series of Furniture Studies by Copenhagen-based Archival Studies. Constructed from standard 12mm interior-grade pine plywood, Chair 02 explores the use of scalable construction systems applied from furniture to spatial design and architecture. The system was initiated, and continues to be, a development of how to build; assemble (sequence) a series of connections (joints), provide structure, and organise space (in this case the human body).
All products by Copenhagen-based Archival Studies are born out of their larger spatial projects. For the case of Chair 02, this archetypal chair was designed and produced for a recent interior project; Interior 03, Kōnā – a Japanese-inspired eatery in Copenhagen.
Archival Studies is an architecture and fabrication office founded in 2018 by Benediktas Burdulis (LT/US), Emil Roman Frøge (DK), Jesse Yang (TW) and Jo Qiang (CH). Archival Studies is an architecture and fabrication office that researches, develops, designs, and builds spatial objects and solutions of high artistic quality. Since 2018 they have been working their way up in scale: starting with furniture, then interior architecture, and finally, the architectural scale.
Bench 01 and Bedside Tables
Bahraini–Danish brings together abstract, constructivist forms that present an abstracted beauty through an honest use of material combined with references to commonplace building and engineering structures. A rich walnut bench, with bowed support reminiscent of a bridge over water, is coupled with a pair of bold forms, in the softly illuminated bedside tables produced from smooth Portuguese rosa marble. simple yet bold forms are offset by a richness in material and production precision. Bench 01 references notions of tectonic architecture, simplifying grand engineering principles into the form of a humble bench. Produced from a series of CNC routed pieces of solid walnut timber, the bench is simply slotted together – expertly balanced and weighted to reference the structural components of a bridge.
Bahraini–Danish was established in Bahrain in 2016 by Batool Alshaikh, Maitham Alumbarak, and Christian Vennerstrøm Jensen. The studio highlights their varied cultural heritage to form the springboard on which to delve into their cultural differences, both socially and professionally, as a means of creation. Through dialogue and a democratic approach to design and architecture, each project is formed, drawing by drawing, towards a new common order in collaboration with local artisans and craftspeople – thoughtfully providing a contemporary relevant way to produce and craft objects and spaces.
300kg Beauty Bath
Frederik Nystrup-Larsen & Oliver Sundqvist
300kg Beauty Bath is an exercise in utilising hands-on process in place of any conceptual grounding or meaning. While the piece is finished on top with a small pool in which birds can bath and feed, this function is merely a bi-product of the process of creating the sculptural work. First constructed from polystyrene and tape, this initial cheap and light material is altered when cast in aluminium –the works perceived value, worth and weight receive a total makeover as a result of this transformation.
300kg Beauty Bath represents a shifting point in the collaborative work of Frederik Nystrup-Larsen and Oliver Sundqvist. Their projects up until this point, have been built around a strong conceptual base, on which materials, forms and functions can build from. For this project, they have done away with conceptualising the final form prior to construction, simply allowing the process of making to dictate the end result. This freedom of process has created an almost archetypal construction consisting of structural posts and beams, clad in a series of highly textured cast aluminium panels.
Through a simple yet sensual form, the Ombre Light presents the unique duality of illumination. A functional light source is placed centrally behind an ombre glass pane in a gradient from light to dark blue. Reminiscent of clouds filtering sunlight, the resulting illumination taps into our bodies’ own sensory reactions to light and shadow.
The Ombre Light by architect and designer Mette Schelde utilises both visual cues and tactile functionality to create a light source that interacts with its user. Inspired by the softened light created as a cloud passes over the sun, the LED light source is placed in the centre of a large circular piece of glass.
Appearing closer to a monolithic stone monument than a timber cabinet, the unique texture of Ebano references a story of materiality, rather than that of a lost society. An exterior constructed from off-cut pieces of Ebony timber bears each stroke of the axe and mark of the chainsaw used to fell the prized timber decades ago. These marks create a textural centrepiece that attracts a tactile relationship – one is required to run their hands over the sharp exterior to discover seven refined Rosewood drawers hidden within.
Ebano by Danish designer and cabinetmaker Rasmus Fenhann is a furniture piece that celebrates raw materiality and expert craftsmanship. Gifted from a fellow cabinetmaker, the exterior of the cabinet is constructed from a stacked collection of Ebony off-cuts. Taken from the exterior of an Ebony tree once felled and hewn decades ago, these remaining pieces contained the textural residue of each swing of the axe and cut of the chainsaw used to process its timber.
Rasmus Fenhann’s work is created using carefully selected natural materials – predominantly timber. His process combines traditional and sometimes near-forgotten craft techniques with advanced technology and tooling.
Architectural Glass Fantasies
Architectural Glass Fantasies offer a glimpse into a vibrant vision of a dreamed society. Mould-blown glass overlays digitally printed patterns and forms to present scale models of a more sculptural arc Architectural Glass Fantasies is a growing collection of works by the Danish glass artist Stine Bidstrup, initially sparked by a series of visions by the German writer Paul Scheerbart and German architect Bruno Taut following World War 1.
Based just outside of Aarhus, Denmark, the work of designer/maker Stine Mikkelsen explores the emotional resonance objects can have within our daily lives. In-tangibles presents three hand formed items created from crushed stone and natural glue, with their shapes inspired by rarely used, yet emotionally significant family keepsakes – a candy bowl, a brooch and a sleigh bell. Whilst Mikkelsen is attracted to the idea of minimal living – one focused around objects of use and need, the series delves into our deep connection with objects because of unknown factors, hence the title of the series, In-tangibles.
Ctenophora Vase, Echinoidea Bowl, Morning Dip Side Table
Copenhagen-based 3D printing studio 91-92 presents a series of objects inspired by the fluid forms of sea creatures. Utilising only recycled PETG or PET material, these three organic forms – a vase, a bowl and a side table, create a series of intriguing and functional forms, whilst also allowing each piece to be produced without the need for support material – eliminating any material waste.
91-92 is a Copenhagen-based 3D printing studio that designs, develop, and produce everyday objects and furniture made from recycled plastic. They believe that 3D printing technology is positioned to become more involved in our sustainable daily lives by localising production, minimising material waste, and reducing energy consumption. They have committed to produce only using recycling material.
All Images Courtesy: The Mindcraft Project
Photography by: Anders Sune Berg & Benjamin Lund
Danish Arts Foundation
Aage og Johanne Louis-Hansens Fond