Meet the talented Meike Harde
A force for rethinking technologies and construction rules
If you have never heard of the talented young designer Meike Harde, now is a good time for an introduction! Meike creates designs which are both a treat for the eye as well as practical in use.
Harde works with common materials and places them in new contexts and forms. Her studies in the behavior and properties of the particular material she is using creates new possibilities in upholstery, lighting or other furniture construction. With a poetic conceptual touch she tries to rethink the common manufacturing technologies and construction rules. She transforms this matter in an experimental-constructive base and looks. Creating a different and fascinating look in her designs. Here are some examples of her latest work.
Zieharsofika is one of the designs of the german based designer. Instead of a flat and stiff cushion she uses elastic bands and rubber foam, to create a new upholstery method. Rubber foam is commonly used in the upholstery industry for its soft and stiff qualities. The rectangular shaped foam has been transformed into an ornamental form by layering and gathering the materials. Compared to common upholstery techniques Zieharsofika achieves the same result by compressing the foam. The gathering causes a strong and stiff core while the surface is still flexible and soft. The gathering foam keeps its flexibility, softness and strength and achieves the same result as a common upholstery techniques.
The textile furniture series “London” consists of a wardrobe, a cabinet as well as a bag-like storage object.
Did you know that the real function of wardrobes is only to serve as a protection against dust and to keep clothes nicely folded in storage. Most popular furniture are made with heavy materials like wood or press board. But a wardrobe or cabinet does not need any of these features. That is why Meike Harde created the furniture series London. By using a framework of metal bars she covered the furniture with textile materials. The fabric protects the clothes to the same extent, but the furniture is more lightweight, mobile and has soft shapes.
The German magazine Hotel & Technology wrote favourably about the London series:
“Flexible eye-catcher: As if “rustic oak” had never existed. The filigree fabric-covered wardrobes by Meike Harde convey an outstanding lightness with an individual style.”
I was lucky enough to see her latest work wooden aquarelle at Milan Design week 2015. This work shows the result of a material study to colour wood. By colouring the wooden surface with liquid pigments and water she creates an object with an autonomous colour response. As a result each piece becomes unique and shows the wooden material’s random colour-gradients, soft transitions, polychrome streaks and nuances like translucent ink.
We might be hearing a lot more from Meike Harde in the nearby future. Currently you can spot Harde’s work in several exhibitions of trendwatcher Lidewij Edelkoort, one of the more influential people of the design industry. Edelkoort’s latest trendreport is called: “Gathering”, a matching theme of Meike harde’s work.
Curious about her work? Check her website www.meikeharde.com
Article by Elise von Grumbkow