Association for Designers (Vormgeversassociatie). Out of the Academy of Fine Arts in Arnhem, various partnerships emerged in the ‘70s, such as those between graphic designers Loek Kemming, Noudi Spönhoff and Jan van den Broek, and the product designers Hans Ebbing, Ton Haas and Paul Schudel. However, the industrial design did not get off the ground, so both of the collectives decided to merge and launch their own products onto the market under the brand name Designum in 1979. One year later, there were three products available under this name. The designers were called the ‘new stubborns,’ because they wanted to retain control over their designs and made utensils according to their own personal views. Other designers were also able to produce their own designs, such as Herman Hermsen’s lamps. Designum’s products are characterised by ‘visual functionality’, by which the designers meant that they relied on the essence, but they also wanted to visualise the idea of the product. For example, Schudel’s DK clock had a sandblasted glass plate so as to reflect the abstraction of the concept of time. Ebbing and Haas went their own ways in 1983, and from then on Schudel formed the Association for Designers (IIV). During the 1980s and 1990s, Kemming and Spönhoff were responsible for the design of the magazine Items and they were also part of the editorial board. The brand Designum was discontinued in 2004 and some designs were taken over by Goods.
The Dutch version of this biography is taken from the book Visies op vormgeving, het Nederlandse ontwerpen in teksten deel 2: 1940-2000 (2008) by Frederike Huygen. The following sources have been used for this biography:
– Staal, G. ‘Industriële vormgeving. Vormgeversassociatie’, Bijvoorbeeld 14 (1982) 1, pp. 27-29.
– information by Spönhoff.