From 29 June until 23 August 2015, the Red Dot Design Museum and the Ruhr Museum in Essen, Germany, present the exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form”. It tells “60 years of design history in Essen – from ‘Industrieform’ to Red Dot” in Hall 5 at Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site. The exhibition presents current and historical exhibits, reconstructs elements of past presentations, and documents eyewitness accounts alongside posters and photographs from 60 years of design history. The patron of the exhibition is the President of the German Bundestag, Prof. Dr. Norbert Lammert.
This year, Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen, which was founded as organisation “Industrieform”, is taking stock of its 60-year history. The aim was to set up a “Permanent Show of Elegant Industrial Products”. It was opened at Villa Hügel in 1955, and went on to contribute to an appreciation of aesthetics and to the modern-day understanding of design culture. It was also in 1955 that the annually organised design competition, now the internationally renowned Red Dot Award, was first held. As is still customary today, the award-winning products were shown in a permanent exhibition. The exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form” reconstructs this first presentation at Villa Hügel, showing a large number of the original exhibits from that exposition, including the legendary Mercedes-Benz 300 SL.
The joint exhibition by Ruhr Museum and Red Dot Design Museum Essen tells the rich history of Design Zentrum NRW. Building on the initiatives for art in the industrial area of the Ruhr region and the City of Essen, which were influenced by the Folkwang idea of Karl Ernst Osthaus, the designs for the Margarethenhöhe garden city and artist colony by Georg Metzendorf and the overall architectural concept for Zollverein by Fritz Schupp and Martin Kremmer, the 1950s saw the foundations laid for today’s Design Zentrum.
Using photos and exhibits, the exhibition recounts the journey of the former Haus Industrieform from Villa Hügel to the Red Dot Design Museum in the boiler house converted by Sir Norman Foster at Zollverein World Heritage Site. Since 1997, with about 2,000 exhibits, it houses the world’s largest exhibition of contemporary design. A second part of the exhibition documents the history of the exhibitions and competitions of Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen as well as the development of its corporate design in collaboration with leading photographers and graphic designers, thus demonstrating the international importance of Red Dot in today’s design world.
The title of the exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form” is a quote by journalist Clara Menck that stems from the time of the first Industrieform exhibition. It describes design as a permanent task to optimise the environment created by us and thus to secure our existence going forward.
A joint exhibition of Ruhr Museum and Red Dot Design Museum Essen
5 Euro (Reduced: 3 Euro)
Children/Youth under 18 years: free admission
Mon - Sun: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sundays, 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. (Costs: 3 € per person plus admission)
Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site
Areal A [Schacht/Shaft XII], Hall 5 [A5]
Gelsenkirchener Straße 181
Making a Difference / A Difference in Making
27 September 2016 - 30 October 2016
DANSK LYS – Lighting and Lamp Design from Denmark
15 November 2016 - 15 January 2017
Under the Sign of the Circle: Red Dot awarded Design Innovations from Japan
25 November 2016 - 19 March 2017
The Red Dot Design Museum is open on Monday, 31 October.
Until 24 November, a small space of the museum is not accessible due to building a new special exhibition. “Under the Sign of the Circle” is on show from 25 November.