Verformbare Schale – malleable bowl
Appreciation of the winner
by Peter Nickl – Chamber of Crafts for Munich and Upper Bavaria
Human imagination stores traditional forms and takes them for granted. This is especially true of classical forms. We are surprised and our visual perception is disturbed if these forms suddenly vary or are altered. The silver bowl that was awarded the Bavarian State Prize for Young Designers falls into this category. Its rim can be bent and its sides can be pulled up or pushed down either at the same time or individually. The appearance of the bowl changes depending on whether the sides are up and the bowl is curved or the sides are down and the bowl is flat.
The ability to be malleable requires a mechanism that is very simple, yet highly differentiated, and operates on the same principle as a paper streamer. The strength and stability of the bowl’s form guarantee the opportunity to develop skillfully and elaborately integrated profiles.
Because of the surprising aesthetics of the piece, the viewer gradually becomes aware that it follows a basic familiar form. To the eye, it seems as if the form – in itself, closed off and layered in rings – has been deconstructed into a myriad of various pieces. Its construction ensures an attractive interaction of light and shadow with visual decomposition on the surface. The flexibility and liveliness of this surface result in an appearance with matter-of-fact characteristics that almost suggest the piece grew in nature. The novel technological idea behind the concept was highlighted as exemplary by the jury. It is imaginable that the mechanism – which works perfectly – could be transferred to diverse other areas of use.
The sponsors of the Bavarian State Prize for Young Designers intend to highlight technological innovations such as this one and promote their developers. The history of the State Prize shows that other unusual inventions have found their way into serial production. Technical innovation is not unusual for silversmiths who have long since left their traditional sphere of activity behind. Devices and containers made of silver no longer have the status in our everyday lives and in society that they used to have. It is thanks to the inventive and playful spirit of young people that this craft has been transferred to our times in such a convincing manner and that new markets have been opened up to ensure a future that will include surprising novelties. Christofer Born received training at a craft institution in Bavaria from which he graduated with an apprentice’s degree. He currently studies silversmithing at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Nuremberg with Prof. Ulla Meyer