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No Name Design
Franco Clivio, No Name Design (Paper), Foto: Hans Hansen

It is astounding how much stuff is all around us. They have increased almost infinitely in number since industrialization. Franco Clivio, a Swiss designer who just turned 80 (ndion of July 7, 2022), believes that learning about how things came to be in the world is an integral part of the design process. He finds it fascinating how different things can be made, how different things can be built, and how different design solutions can be created with the same material. Clivio, whose most well-known creations include the Gardena system, the “pico” for Lamy, and spotlights and luminaires for Erco, still enjoys looking for unusual everyday items, especially those that are the result of an especially creative idea. Only a very small percentage of those who invented or created them are known, and they all belong to the anonymous daily design. Around a thousand of these commonplace items have been gathered by Clivio, who has utilized them in lessons with students or as an inspiration for his own work.

From February 11 to May 21, the HfG Archive in Ulm will present an exhibition titled No Name Design that provides insights into the collection, which at times resembles a cabinet of curiosities from the industrial era. Franco Clivio, who also studied at the Ulm School of Design from 1963 to 1967, is credited in the announcement with “creating through his selection an awareness of the reality that no large names and no brands are needed for the design of products and our environment.” He also demonstrated the value of paying attention to details and examining objects for their construction and purpose.

The exhibition will begin on February 10 at 7 p.m. in the HfG Archive, which is located in the former Ulm School of Design building. Curator Christiane Wachsmann will provide an introduction and Dr. Stefanie Dathe, Director of the Museum Ulm, will speak with Franco Clivio. The Museum Ulm will show Clivio’s deftly folded “Manifolds” (ndion of September 26, 2022) through February 12.

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