Berlin's 'DMY' International Design Festival Opens

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Inside the DMY Festival i

Inside the DMY Festival Monika Mueller-Kroll for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Monika Mueller-Kroll for NPR
Inside the DMY Festival

Inside the DMY Festival

Monika Mueller-Kroll for NPR

Designers from all over the world came to Berlin for "DMY," the international design festival.

The ninth edition of the festival took place at Airport Tempelhof; the historic airport hangars provided a nice contrast for viewing the contemporary product design on display.

As I was looking for furniture I would like to have in my apartment, I was drawn to what looked like a modern sculpture, but it turned out to be a seating system.

Maren Zielke, one of the designers at DMY, says there is a need for practical furniture, but on the other hand, practical furniture, if it's not in use, takes up a lot of space and doesn't always look great.

"I wanted to do something that did look good and worked in a living environment if it's not in use," Zielke says.

Zielke, a graduate from the Berlin University of the Arts, designed "Entourage," a six-seating piece made out of frame foam, a foam that is solid but light. When the pieces are interlocked, it fits easily in a corner and looks like art. Taken apart, it seats six people.

Maren Zielke's design is called the  "Entourage," a six-seating piece made out of frame foam.

Maren Zielke's design is called the "Entourage," a six-seating piece made out of frame foam. Monika Mueller-Kroll for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Monika Mueller-Kroll for NPR

The next stop was the Hong Kong based design lab KaCaMa. They specialize in recycling.

After Hong Kong fashion week, two of the designers, Match and Kay, used the discarded coat hangers to make new products.

"And then we tried to create some funny things and used 40 hangers to make a side table, and they look great, yes. So we try to make it as simple as we can."

The standardized shape of the black plastic coat hangers made it possible to create a sturdy table structure without altering the hangers. The designers made a circular table top to fit the coat hanger base.

For people who like to individualize their furniture, a chair designed by Bashko Trybek from Poland might strike a chord. The chair is based on metal wire with anti-stress balls. The wire base acts as a frame for the balls which may be rearranged as one likes. The ball's colors are cmyk- those used in standard printing.

Bashko Trybek says if you can choose your colors, you can make your own image of your chair.

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