New Design of the Eighties

In furniture and product design a tendency emerged during the eighties of the 20th century in which furniture and objects were designed completely new and from different aesthetic viewpoints. Activated by design groups such as »Superstudio«, »Archizoom« (1966) and »Alchimia« (1976) an understanding of design arose in Italy that was no longer focussed just on functionalism, but also on emotion. The new design ultimately became established by Ettore Sottsass, who, with the group »Memphis« (1981), achieved the breakthrough, above all thanks to outstanding PR work. The pure utilitarian concept was supplemented by an avant-garde, a highly creative approach to design. The idea of the deliberately simple remained and, according to design currents, was augmented by ecological, material-related, form-critical, parodistic or ironic components. Appreciated by a wide public this new design was promoted by exhibitions, for example »Wohnen von Sinnen«, which was planned by the Frankfurt product designer Volker Albus in 1986 and shown in the Düsseldorf Kunstmuseum.