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Home is no longer connected with objects, so the British architect Joseph Grima says, who is the curator of the coming Biennale Interieur in Kortrijk (from Oct. 17-26) and who has chosen “The Home Does Not Exist” as its motto. Photo © Biennale Interieur
At home, assuming it exists?
by Martina Metzner
10/1/2014

At the last Biennale Interieur in Kortrijk, Belgium, the focus was on the “Life’s Basic Fittings”, Joseph Grima, who is curating the coming festival (it runs from Oct. 17-26) has chosen “The Home Does Not Exist” as its motto. The British architect and former editor-in-chief of Domus was initially commissioned by the Biennale Interieur to conduct a study – which revealed that property no longer plays a role for the generation of digital natives. Home, or so Grima suggests, is no longer connected with objects. The apartment may still provide the backdrop of an evening meal, but is interchangeable, he claims. Be that as it may, the findings of “SQM: The Quantified Home” will be staged at the Biennale and debated. Meaning that traditional concepts of home life will be up for grabs given the lack of space in cities today, new smart technologies, and nomadic lifestyles. Do we even need furniture? What kind of products is the market calling for? What sort of a city will arise through sharing concepts à la Airbnb?

Moreover, at the Biennale Interieur, which has taken place since 1968, with 2014 marking its 24th edition, a mélange of international exhibitors will be presenting their novelties increasingly in the context of fashion and the culinary world: in the six halls at the design fair on the Xpo complex. It goes without saying that Belgian designers abound, among them companies such as Bulo, Dark, De Zetel, Extremis, Jori, Mintjens, Objekten, Per/Use and MA – Marina Bautier’s brand that the Biennale has honored with the accolade of “Designer of the Year 2014”. From Germany, corporations such as Alape, Bette, Bulthaup, Duravit, Gaggenau, Geberit, Gira Giersiepen, Hansgrohe, Jan Kath, Occhio, Piure, SieMatic, Vitamin Design, and Zeitraum will all be attending. Along with industry heavyweights such as Alessi, Artek, Axor, Kvadrat, Kristalia, Lago, Moroso, Verzelloni, and Vitra.

Visitors can once again look forward to additional highlights in the very heart of Kortrijk and on Buda island: At the “Buda Factory”, the masterminds behind Milan’s Ventura Lambrate present selected exhibitors under the title “Ventura Interieur”. At the Broelmuseum there’ll be an installation by the Brits at Studio Glithero to ogle, and the electronic band “Goose” will be taking to the stage at “Buda Tower”. While at “Broel School”, a new venue at the Biennale, design duos such as Léa Padovani and Sebastien Kieffer (together they form Paris’ Pool), DessuantBone and eight other cooperatives will each set up shop in a 50-sq.m.-sized class room. In the form of “Interieur Extra”, the Biennale wants to make its presence more strongly felt downtown, to which end 20 exhibitions and projects initiated by various curators will be on show along a predetermined route.

The “Interieur Awards” category "Spaces" are being bestowed for the second time. There were more than 70 entries from 18 different countries, and the jury led by Axor’s Philippe Grohe chose five winners who can now realize their hospitality concepts at the Biennale Interieur. Charlotte Ryberg, Fritz Hakon Halvorsen and Marcia Harvey Isaksson from Sweden want to erect a global fishing village in the form of “Gone Fishing” – offering meals made with sustainable ingredients. In the “Dried Chat Room” by Alberto Atresani, Frederik De Wachter, Francesca Perani and Sandra Marchesi serve up original cuisine on thermal blankets, gold foil and polystyrene; Belgium’s Jasper Stevens and Karel Verstraeten introduce “Behind the Curtain”, a haven of tranquility with marble tabletops and silk curtains. With their “Fusion Bar”, Lukas Wegwerth and Wendelin Kammermeier seek to comment on the exuberant diversity of foodstuffs on offer in supermarkets. And at “21.Three Gelato Meccanico” Italy’s Davide Fabio Colaci, Lula Ferrari, Stefano Citi, Laura Doardo, Ludovica Niero and Marco Savini invite you to make ice-cream with your own two hands. Moreover, something great for the taste-buds is also promised by the “Belgian Banquet” at the Broel School, created on the basis of a concept devised jointly by the last eight “Designers of the Year”.

As regards the “Interieur Awards” category "Objects", a jury led by Rolf Hay of Hay selected 20 winners from among 240 anonymized entries. The main prize, and it is worth EUR 2,500, goes this year to Italo-Japanese design duo Minale-Maeda for its “Keystones” table, which combines 3D printing and DIY design, thus marking the start of a new chapter in the history of furniture design. Five winning entries came from Germany: “24 Hrs Light” by Lisa Müller and Franziska Schmidt; “All Wood Stool” by Karoline Fesser, “Dune Carpets” by Sarah Böttger and Hanna Emelie Ernsting; “Project Cooking Table” by Moritz Putzier; and “Salut” by Meike Langer.

Last but certainly not least: To make certain you can enjoy your stay in Kortrijk, the organizers have assembled special visitor packages that you can download from the festival’s Website by clicking “Travel & Stay” and “One Day, One Night”. And once again Audi is providing 50 cars to offer a comfortable shuttle service between the different venues. Anyone who prefers pedal power and a little fresh air may prefer one of the guided bike tours that start at the Broel School on “Marcel Kint” brand bicycles.

Biennale Interieur, Kortrijk
October 17–26, 2014
www.interieur.be

For Stylepark-users the fair offers free tickets, mail to:
berlin@hicklvesting.com

Appearing to coincide with the key Biennale theme:
SQM: The Quantified Home
Thoughts and Discussions on the Square Meter
Biennale Interieur, Kortrijk 2014
Ed. by Joseph Grima (Space Caviar)
Softcover, 320 pages, English
Lars Müller Publishers, Zürich
EUR 35
www.lars-mueller-publishers.com

Curator of the coming Biennale Interieur: Joseph Grima. Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Broel School” is a new venue at the Biennale, where design duos will each set up shop in a 50-sq.m.-sized class room. Photo © Biennale Interieur
The Biennale Interieur has honored with the accolade of “Designer of the Year 2014” Marina Bautier. Photo © Biennale Interieur
The main prize of the “Interieur Awards” category "Objects" goes this year to Minale-Maeda for its “Keystones” table, which combines 3D printing and DIY design. Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Interieur Awards” category "Spaces": Lukas Wegwerth and Wendelin Kammermeier seek to comment with their “Fusion Bar” on the exuberant diversity of foodstuffs.
Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Interieur Awards“ category "Spaces": Charlotte Ryberg, Fritz Hakon Halvorsen and Marcia Harvey Isaksson from Sweden want to erect a global fishing village. Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Interieur Awards“ category "Spaces": at “21.Three Gelato Meccanico” Italy’s Davide Fabio Colaci, Lula Ferrari, Stefano Citi, Laura Doardo, Ludovica Niero and Marco Savini invite you to make ice-cream with your own two hands. Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Interieur Awards“ category "Spaces": In the “Dried Chat Room” by Alberto Atresani, Frederik De Wachter, Francesca Perani and Sandra Marchesi serve up original cuisine on thermal blankets, gold foil and polystyrene. Photo © Biennale Interieur
“Interieur Awards“ category "Spaces": Belgium’s Jasper Stevens and Karel Verstraeten introduce “Behind the Curtain”, a haven of tranquility with marble tabletops and silk curtains.
Photo © Biennale Interieur