Danish Design Now: broadening the horizon for design

With access to new materials and technologies, Danish design today is reaching the market with innovative products for everyday life. With the broadest spectrum of design products imaginable, the Danish Design Now exhibition truly takes a look at the big picture.

We decided to take a tour of the exhibition on the opening night of March 10, and were quickly overwhelmed with impressions. Within the first few steps, there were already desktop lamps, medical equipment, porcelain and pig feeding machines in sight.

The exhibition takes you through a densely set atmosphere. While some features pop out of the crowd, others discretely blend in to create the urban environment for which they were originally intended.

From process to product

Making our way through the urban maze, sketches and video interviews also make it possible to follow the process behind the design – from the preliminary thoughts based on research, understanding of user needs and assessment of materials, technologies and design expression, to the first models and prototypes coming to life. All of which eventually evolve into finished products.

Besides being invited behind the scenes, the exhibition also takes an outward look on the design agenda. Danish Design Now partly aims to draw attention to a larger discussion about the expectations we have for our everyday products. With sustainable growth and consumption on the public agenda, the users’ expectations are constantly increasing with respect to the design of our homes, work spaces and urban environments.

No product is anonymous

Meanwhile, the exhibition makes it surprisingly obvious to us that no everyday product can claim anonymity. In our current lifestyle society, all objects we find in our homes – even the cooking mixer and the wireless router – have become prestige objects. They express and communicate who we are, and the product’s functionality is no longer sufficient. Aesthetics, sophistication, sensory engagement and emotional satisfaction are thus key in today’s product design.

Design is for everyone and everything

Companies are also increasingly recognizing this, and design in contemporary society has been placed on the agenda as a strategic choice that adds value. No task is too small for design, and even an object as simple as a handle is recognized as a legitimate undertaking.

The exhibition creates a space that is relevant to everyone – it is a space where business, education, culture and industry interact and intertwine, definitely marking Danish designers’ impact on a global scale.



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