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Prototypes & Experiments I

30 May – 30 August 2008

The Aram Gallery initiated a series of displays made up of prototypes and experiments sourced from designers’ studios in May 2008. The displays formed the start of a long-term and ever-changing exhibition, with a new piece brought into the gallery each time another is sold or returned to its owner.


Prototypes and experiments are critical elements in the development process of any new design. The prototype is the manifestation of the design idea on its way to production; experiments are more like steps on the way. The prototype, being part of a process, makes more real an idea that will lead to a final piece, and is not made with the intention of being sold or shown outside the designers’ studio. Experiments are also unique artefacts but are even less refined and sometimes constitute a partial sketch on the way to the prototype.


These objects however, can hold a rare charm; there’s an increased closeness to the designer’s imagination, and a directness to the making that often changes when manufacturing and marketing forces are fully integrated. The objects might be characterised by a technical or material discrepancy, compared to the final product, due to a lack of access of the designer to technology at the process stage. It’s a stark contrast to the current wave of limited editions – which has made for the unique to be diluted by multiples and for the production piece to be restrained in order to increase the value of singular pieces.


The Aram Gallery is interested in the way designers think and work. We have chosen to present these unique artefacts as part of our ongoing search for insight into the design process. The new programme will start with fourteen pieces sourced from the studios of established and less known designers.


Prototypes and Experiments will include selected drawings alongside the pieces taken from the designers’ physical or digital sketchbooks.


Participants: a.b.a.k.e., Jorre van Ast, Sebastian Bergne, Jurgen Bey, Martino Gamper, Thomas Gardner, El Ultimo Grito, Gitta Gschwendtner, Ineke Hans, Matthew Hilton, Michael Marriott, Ben Panayi, Tomek Rygalik and Floris Schoonderbeek


Photographer Shira Klasmer

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