press release

On Purpose: Design Concepts looks at conceptual design practices, and the questions of functionality and purpose. It will present interventions and work by a selection of the most interesting and 'speculative' designers today.

In recent years, the field of design has evolved significantly having embraced conceptualism and technology, and is now offering advanced parallel theoretical practices to contemporary art. Yet the renowned principle that has been given to design in order to differentiate it from contemporary art is still a point of contention - that it should have specific purpose. On Purpose looks to investigate this tension around this definition of design for an emerging generation; questioning the extent to which 'purpose' is actually its ultimate constraint.

Many of the designs presented elucidate on the kind of work design practitioners may develop when not strictly working to a client brief. The designs are relatively 'anti-aesthetic', experimenting with functionality as opposed to form, often allowing a discursivity to occur as part of the process. The search for a paradoxical relationship between function and non-function is also a characteristic of many of the designs in the exhibition, leading to items that possess either a removal of function, a synthesis of different functions, or a new function.

Focussing also on interventions within Arnolfini, some of which may become semi-permanent, On Purpose will also be used as an opportunity for designers to offer proposals for reshaping the existing infrastructure of Arnolfini. It will look at the public face of the institution - physical and virtual - and will aim to rethink it afresh.

On Purpose: Design Concepts is the second in the Concept Store series of projects at Arnolfini, exploring the realms of marketing, design and experience economy.

Åbäke, Droog Design, Daniel Eatock, Electronest, Ann-Sofie Back, Will Holder, Peter Jensen, Onkar Kular & Noam Toran, Metahaven, Alex Rich, Savage, Yuri Suzuki. Curated by Åbäke and Nav Haq

On Purpose: Design Concepts
Kuratoren: Abäke , Nav Haq

Künstler: Abäke , droog design, Daniel Eatock, Electronest , Ann-Sofie Back, Will Holder, Peter Jensen, Onkar Kular & Noam Toran, Metahaven , Alex Rich, Savage , Yuri Suzuki