Het Nieuwe Instituut is proud to present Designing the Surface, an exhibition where the final topcoat targets the senses. With a remarkable eye for detail, Het Nieuwe Instituut investigates a compendium of artefacts over five sets: lustre, patina, faux, teflon and agency. Sacrifice or artifice: the show is open from 27 January until 25 June 2017 to your interpretation.
In the exhibition Het Nieuwe Instituut lifts the veil on the design industry. Surfaces are full of contradictions; declaration of falsehood and denials. Chairs lie. Dashboards deceive. The standing symbol of the exhibition is a fountain spouting acid that will decay over time. Take a look into the transformation of products – trying to survive in the design world, where nothing is what is seems.
Every coating serves a purpose, whether it is to seduce, protect or imitate. They all battle to emerge to the surface. Designers are no longer limited to coatings; the way a product looks like has become more important than ever. Dissect cars, a marbled tea service, soft baroque surface strategies, among other things. Explore the democratising element of paint, study the difference between ordinary glass and clear shield glass, or if you prefer, have your nails done.