Gruppenbild der Designer und Kuratoren der Ausstellung
© DSL studio, Foto: Marco Cappelletti

Friends + Design

Friendship in times of global competition has become a rare asset. Meanwhile, also among creative people friendships have always been and still are vehicles of reciprocal inspiration and ways of improving one’s own work under the well-wishing yet critical eyes of the others.


In order to celebrate several very special friendships, the curators Tulga Beyerle and Maria Cristina Didero have invited seven designers to visually demonstrate their friendships in projects especially created for the exhibition. Based on very different tasks, the newly created works testify to the time, the affection and the trust that form the bond between these seven very different people.

Tomás Alonso und Mathias Hahn give each other a journey to be made together, Bethan Laura Wood and Philippe Malouin design a very special bed for each other, and the trio Richard Hutten, Jerszy Seymour and Michael Young merge their highly idiosyncratic approaches in a collectively designed table. All this results not only in their very first collective works, but also in demonstrating a bold and optimistic ethos of different cultures and work methods towards an age rushing headlong in the fast lane of cynical consumerism.

© Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
Ausstellungsansicht "Friends + Design", "Youhutseymatic Table" von Richard Hutten, Jerszy Seymour, Michael Young SKD, Foto: Tomáš Souček

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Tomás Alonso (*1974, ES) worked in the USA, Australia and Italy before he studied at the Royal College of Art in London. For Alonso, the central themes are functionality, simplicity and materiality, without ever losing sight of poetry. His objects make a restrained impression, are selfexplaining and timeless, and never deny their work method. In 2015 he received the Designer of the Future Award.

Mathias Hahn (* 1977, DE) studied industrial design in Germany before going to the Royal College of Art. His training as an industrial designer shaped his approach – although functionality and durability are enriched time and again by his sense of humour and lust to experiment. Hahn shares the OKAYstudio with Tomás Alonso as a collective space. Besides many others, he received the Red Dot Award.

Richard Hutten (*1967, NL) is noted as one of the most successful European designers. Inter alia co-founder of Droog Design, he works in furniture and product design. Controversial and humorous, he constantly questions conventional categories of functionality in our life today. His works can be seen inter alia in the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art Amsterdam, the Vitra Design Museum Weil am Rhein and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Philippe Malouin (*1982, CA) studied inter alia at the Design Academy Eindhoven and the ENSCI in Paris. Malouin’s works are elegant and minimalist and constantly break out from the conventional expectations demanded of objects. Many of his works are elaborately crafted by hand. Malouin is represented in galleries throughout Europe, teaches at the Royal College of Art, and was distinguished in 2012 with the Designer of the Future Award.

Jerszy Seymour (*1968, DE) sees design as a transforming process. His experimental and subversive works, actions and interventions are based on an understanding of design that negates classical boundaries but always respects social responsibility. Seymour’s works can be seen inter alia in the Vitra Design Museum Weil am Rhein, MoMA New York, Centre Pompidou and MAK Vienna.

Bethan Laura Wood (1983, UK) studied at the Royal College of Art. She explores and celebrates the “mundane”, but at the same time the contact to local craftspeople and the inspiration she gets from different cultures play a crucial role in production. Central stylistic vehicles are robust patterns, colours and structures. In 2013 she received the Designer of the Future Award; she is represented by various galleries in Europe.

Michael Young (*1966, UK), after studying at Kingston University, founded his studio in 1993. Young loves design as an industrial art, going through the gamut from major series to one-offs, and combines this with great interest in manufacturing technologies. His works are elegant and always innovative. He is one of the world’s leading design personalities and his works are presented in museums globally. Since 2006 he has been working in Hong Kong, an ideal base to exploit the innovative business enterprises in the region.

[Translate to English:] weitere Ausstellungen

Further Exhibitions


im Schloss Pillnitz

gelber Kasten mit vier Füßen
19.10.2017 —14.01.2018

Marlene Dumas. Hope and Fear

im Residenzschloss

Frauenportrait, Tuschezeichnung auf Papier
01.07.2017 —05.11.2017

Textile design

im Schloss Pillnitz

aufgeschlagenes Buch neben einem Hammer
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