Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Don’t Run Out presented within Galerie Joseph Turenne as part of Paris Design Week 2015.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Cabinet of Imperfections by Helle Clausen and Josephine Ehlers presents a series of introspective spaces, each recognising imperfections and processes of decay, as a resource, instead of a disadvantage.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Iben Birch Bech’s impressive Colourful Water #1 textile aims to highlight the issues associated with fabric dying. On the surface it presents a classical floral pattern, but on closer inspection you can visualize the toxic water run-off created by colourful fabric dying.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
The Doko Demo stool by Nikolai Kotlarczyk was produced out of the leftover flooring panels from Danish timber company Dinesen, and finished in colours from Linolie.dk. Hemp rope is used to contain the pieces of the Doko Demo stool when not in use, as well as binding the structure together when in use.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Rather than presenting a new product, Morten Sylvest’s Everyday Object Analyser presents a system for realizing the enormity of what we already own. While each item has a function, presented in a semi-transparent haze, these individual items become a mass of plastics, metals, fabrics and waste.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Miriam Brostrøm’s use of recycled paper and linen comes together in a tactile and visually interesting rug titled Yesterday’s Paper.

 

With environmental issues becoming an ever more important dialogue within societies and cultures around the world, more than ever it is crucial for the design industry at large to look at ways to improve the way we do things in respect to environmental concerns. While much has been done in regards to material research, movements back to crafts, and different business models, including a shift in the big European brands away from the “bigger is better” motif (although a trip to Milan might not always express this), more can always be done.

For this reason I was thrilled when asked to be part of a new Danish design group focused on these issues. HOLDBAR was created by a dedicated group of young designers, architects and artists to look at what the issues of sustainability mean not only to designers, but to our industry today. Featuring 16 members of various nationalities, all based in Copenhagen, the group has been meeting regularly since early 2015 to dissect and better understand the issues involved, without the clichés of “green design” rearing its head. The group is very open about the enormity of this issue, and many of the member’s work chooses to raise awareness and discussions around these issues than solving problems 100%. We have also been joined regularly by external advisors specialising in sustainable education, environmental engineering and curatorship to make sure we aren’t a bunch of designers on an ego trip.

 

Holdbar Presents 'Dont Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Annika Göransson presented the Alfred storage system. Its multi-functional use helps facilitate the user to continue using it irrespective of changing environments and spatial restraints. The unit is made from Danish ash and Swedish Leather.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
The simple design language of Krøyer-Sætter-Lassen’s Outil stool means it can be produced in Denmark at minimal costs, keeping production local. Its stackability also proposes questions regarding mass transport of design.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
French designer Morgane Kerbrat has “baked” recycled paper and everyday kitchen ingredients to form these colourful lights and objects titled ‘Paperlike’.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
The Rest mattress by Fie & Signe Bjørch utilizes an internal filling of dried eelgrass, with a C2C certified threaded wool outer case, to create a totally biodegradable piece.

 

With such a diverse group, we have presented a range of interpretations of sustainable design through the exhibition Don’t Run Out as part of Paris Design Week, at the renowned Galerie Joseph Turenne. With Maison & Objet running in conjunction with the design week, a show expressing the other, perhaps less commercial aspects of design, is more fitting than at any other time throughout the European design circuit. Masion & Objet has to be Europe’s biggest design buyers fair, and brings with it the good, the bad, and the ugly. Perhaps the only fair where you can get stuck in a scented candle hall with a hangover!! Not cool.

Due to the variety in professions associated within the group, Don’t Run Out highlights a range of approaches. Andreas Glud Konradsen’s Ripe chair looks at the fast past, sales driven design market, and in reaction proposes a design where the consumer has to wait for the chair to “rust together” at the bottom of the sea. The Danish seaside is also an inspiration for Fie & Signe Bjørch’s piece Rest, which harks back to when mattresses and pillows were stuffed with dried eelgrass, found in abundance along the countries coastlines. My own piece, along with that of Miriam Ortwed, utilizes waste materials, along with current CNC and laser cutting technology to present simple and innovative products that reduce the negative impacts of excess manufacturing and transportation. Other projects choose to work with issues of social sustainability, such as Helle Clausen and Josephine Ehlers Cabinet of Imperfections that is produced by Hjemløsning, a Danish wood workshop run to help ex-offenders, the homeless and troubled youth get back into work.

 

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
The Signal Light Series by Benjamin J. Kolstrup is designed to revive traditional local woodworking crafts in Denmark, and utilizes the often un-wanted timbers, such as brown-cored ashwood, which can often go to waste.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Miriam Ortwed’s Recircle takes advantage of fabric off-cuts from companies like Kvadrat and Refurn, and turns them into a stunning fabric screen or wall feature. The fabric pieces are simply laser cut into simple shapes and slotted together, allowing the user to play with configurations and colour ways.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
Anne Brandhøj’s has designed Re-Cover in collaboration with Gabriel fabrics, a chair covering that can mold and shape to pre-loved chairs and give them new life. When not used on an old chair it can be filled with old cloths and transformed into a pouf.

Holdbar Presents 'Don't Run Out' at Paris Design Week 2015 | Yellowtrace
The Ripe chair is first constructed from raw steel and held in place at the bottom of the ocean, where over time it will fuse together.

 

Apart from the environmental considerations of the pieces within Don’t Run Out, the group was also aware the exhibition as a whole needed to express these values. This included the Don’t Run Out catalogue being only the second ever fully biodegradable and cradle-to-cradle publication in Denmark’s history, thanks to the help of KLS printers in Copenhagen.

With the mass production of design, especially in Denmark, growing every year, HOLDBAR will continue to question the role of design within society at large. What we can do as industry thinkers and makers to benefit the environment are key to the future of the group.

 


[Photography by Amanda Hestehave.]

 

About The Author

Nikolai Kotlarczyk
Contributor

Since heading the Tait Melbourne showroom in Australia, a move to Copenhagen in 2013 led to Nikolai establishing his design studio CZYK, with a strong focus on single material design pieces. Since this time, CZYK has exhibited in Melbourne and Milan, and will be presenting work at Paris Design Week in September with a new Danish design group, Holdbar, of which he is a founding member. Nikolai also co-founded the small culture house Øen (The Island) in Copenhagen’s inner north with a focus on music, art and installation. He also gets very homesick from time to time.

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