Glaze and Etch are the most recent additions to a series of textiles designed by Hella Jongerius in collaboration with the Maharam Design Studio. Through precise use of color and graphic form, both demonstrate Jongerius’s interest in replicating the variation of the handmade on an industrial scale.
Based on a series of ceramic tiles intended for a tabletop, Glaze expands Jongerius’s work with porcelain—a medium that has long been a focus in her study of combining ancient craft techniques with modern technology. Seen first with Jongerius’s iconic Red White Vase (1997), a symbol of her enduring fascination with color and materials, Jongerius has enlisted porcelain as a neutral canvas for a series of color experiments reflected in Maharam textiles Vases (2013) and Colorwheel (2013). Glaze’s design began with a grid-like arrangement of four-inch-square tiles that was glazed to create fluid color mixing and undulation across neighboring surfaces. Its translation to a woven design enlists a variety of woven textures to mimic the overlapping tones that Jongerius previously achieved in ceramic glaze. Balancing structure with movement, Glaze merges fluid and rectilinear motifs within a detailed, domestically woven construction.
Similar graphic facility is seen in Etch, which simulates the organic variation of hand-drawn lines animated by orientation and rhythm. Featuring an identical construction as Glaze, Etch offers a randomized cadence of color and directionality within a structured grid. In pursuit of individuality on a mass scale, Etch’s large-scale field of stripes reveals intricate shifts upon closer inspection. The resultant textile personalizes an archetypal motif while challenging the homogeneity of commercial production.
Reflecting Jongerius’s highly inventive and expressive approach to color, both textiles are offered in nuanced palettes of six colorways each. To suggest transparent layers, Glaze’s complementary primaries are accompanied by tertiary blends in specialized shades of tangerine, mint, and arctic. Similarly, Etch’s painterly detail is achieved through careful attention to color seen in tones of umber, pearl, and peach.
About Hella Jongerius
A graduate of Design Academy Eindhoven, Hella Jongerius has been a standout in the world of product design since her early work for Droog, the Dutch design collective. She founded Jongeriuslab in Rotterdam in 1993 and moved to Berlin in 2008. Jongerius’s unique approach to craft from the perspective of industry, and her ability to combine these seemingly oppositional methods of production, has allowed her to create individuality on a mass scale. Her work ranges from one-offs and limited editions exhibited at galleries to consumer products available through companies like Vitra, Nymphenburg, Royal Tichelaar Makkum, and IKEA.
Hella Jongerius and Maharam have been collaborating since 2001. Several of the resultant textiles are now in the permanent collections of museums worldwide, including the Art Institute of Chicago; the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; the Museum of Modern Art; the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen; and the Stedelijk Museum, among others. In 2017, Maharam proudly sponsored Breathing Colour, an exhibition examining Jongerius’s distinct approach to color and form through a series of vibrant installations at the Design Museum in London.