form Nº 270. South Korea
Following Seoul’s nomination as World Design Capital in 2010, South Korean design has been increasingly prominent on the international scene. In South Korea itself, however, design has played a decisive role for considerably longer. As Yu-Nah Lee writes in her article “From Nowhere to Everywhere”: “The strong government initiative of design promotion goes back to the beginning of industrial design in South Korea in the late 1950s.” Apart from the country’s history of design, we are also interested in the mindset, identity, and work of South Korean designers. We focus on these topics in interviews, commentaries, and photo series in form 270.
Two separate interviews give us different perspectives on Korean Culture. First, we hear from one of Germany’s most prominent car designers, Peter Schreyer, who worked as chief design officer and is now a board member at the Hyundai Motor Group in South Korea. Next, three employees from Cheil, the largest South Korean advertising agency, talk about the “Korean mindset” at their German branch in Schwalbach am Taunus. In “Graphic Seoul”, Sulki and Min consider on the basis of the work of nine different studios if and how national identity is reflected in contemporary South Korean graphic design. Finally, you’ll find an extract from the Post Seoul website, which offers insights into the lives and the world of work of South Korean creatives with interviews and visuals. At form Dossiers you can read about the background to the project in an interview with the initiators of Post Seoul.
Apart from our focus section on South Korea, we also examine the importance of repair in contemporary textile design, take a look at discussions about sustainability in GDR design and give a preview of this year’s Euroshop fair in Düsseldorf.
The second part of our jubilee series “Revisiting the Past”, celebrating form’s 60th anniversary, is dedicated to the on-going and still relevant debate about functionalism. Starting from a series of contributions on the topic from the late 1960s and early 1970s – in particular, the three articles by Gerda Müller-Krauspe entitled “Design Ideologies”, which you can read here – Daniel Hornuff looks at the role of functionalism in design from today’s point of view.
The three articles available to read online this time are “Interwoven”, introducing the final-year projects submitted by three textile designers, another ten to the above-mentioned South Korean graphic design studios, and a feature on the phenomenon of design galleries and what they say about the state of the discipline.