26 November 2009 – 7 February 2010
The Serpentine Gallery is developing its commitment to design by inviting influential German product designer Konstantin Grcic to curate Design Real, a groundbreaking presentation of contemporary design.
Across the globe, there is a growing awareness of design and its impact on the world we inhabit. Like contemporary art, design both shapes and reflects our constantly changing society. Good design understands human behaviour, offers pragmatic solutions to problems and enhances our everyday experience.
Grcic’s selection for Design Real focuses on ‘real’ items all conceived in the last decade: mass-produced products that have a practical function in everyday life. The exhibition presents a wide range of objects by leading international designers and manufacturers, from furniture and household products to technical and industrial innovations.
‘What interests me about industrial design is how these things are made, in what material, and how this has affected their language and their quality, ’explains Grcic. ‘Some objects are very technically-driven; the function really determines the object. Other objects have much more of a signature or an authorship; you see the handwriting of the designer who made it and that’s what makes it so special.’
By highlighting objects that have made a significant impact on our lives, the exhibition provides new perspectives from which to look at the material world around us and encourages new insights into design.
Design Real features a space specially designed by Grcic, where projections expand on themes developed in the exhibition and visitors can investigate the origins and applications of the products on view. A dedicated internet site www.design-real.com, which can be accessed in the space, is the exhibition’s central resource and integral to its concept. The space is also the setting for a series of free public seminars.
Konstantin Grcic, born in Munich in 1965, founded Konstantin Grcic Industrial Design (KGID) in 1991. KGID specialises in various fields of design ranging from industrial products to exhibition design. Grcic’s products have received prestigious international design awards and form part of the permanent collections of institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and Centre Pompidou, Paris.
Curated by Konstantin Grcic
Exhibition design in collaboration with Alex Rich and Jürg Lehni