oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
 
oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
mar 19, 2015

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
(above) long egg – egg slices
image © arne zacher

 

 

is a manhole cover beautiful? why should it be? who would have thought that it might conceal an invisible detail, the product of intelligent input masked by usage? have you ever wondered why packing foam is the shape and size that it is? do you know what is unique about the faceted 50 pence coin?

 

to the naked eye, everything is hidden. conceived as a tribute to objects camouflaged in the landscape, oscar lhermitte has curated ‘no randomness’, an exhibition that invites the publice to experience and discover the far from arbitrary reasons for why something has been created a certain way. presented at the 2015 biennale internationale design saint-étienne, the show highlights things that we use in our everyday lives, so mundane — some of them having taken on a form of self-evidence — that we have forgotten how functional and well-designed they really are.

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
square root of 2 – A format
image © arne zacher

 

 

 

deciding whether or not an object is beautiful is not a simple task: it is sometimes easier to say what we consider it ugly. to assess the relevance and coherence of a product, however, is to observe how cleverly it fits into its environment. ‘I like to understand why such and such a detail was chosen, I like to be aware that it is not accidentally part of the object. I like to discover, for example, that a curve that had hitherto escaped my attention turns out to be the decisive element in the smooth operation of that object: it was there all the time, under my nose, so quiet and yet so relevant,’ says oscar lhermitte. that is perhaps the definition of beauty: an object that has become gracefully and discreetly integrated into the world around it.

oscar lhermitte no randomness saint etienne design biennale designboom 
roundness – man hole cover
image © arne zacher

 

 

 

exposing and questioning the object is an integral part of the designer’s job. the nineteen pieces that lhermitte has selected form the starting point of a collection of creations, each of which contains an ‘invisible’ detail that enables them to fulfill their function to perfection. ‘their beauty, to my mind, lies in their simplicity, the stroke of genius from which they are created – and we celebrate that beauty every time we make use of it, without even noticing it,‘ lhermitte states. while these objects cannot be said to be perfect or irreplaceable, they all nonetheless have a remarkable point in common: they highlight a design that makes the complex simple in all modesty.

 

‘no randomness’ is presented within a set design conceived by lhermitte and stinsensqueeze, and is on show at the biennale internationale design saint-étienne until april 12th, 2015.

oscar lhermitte saint etienne design biennale designboom
one ten-millionth the distance from the earth’s equator to the north pole
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte saint etienne design biennale designboom
size and shape of peanuts – packing foam
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte no randomness saint etienne design biennale designboom
crown shape – metal bottle caps
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte no randomness saint etienne design biennale designboom
exact ratios – euro coins
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
round bottom – fire bucket
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
pantone 152 – safety orange
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
tread – tyre
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
octagon – STOP sign
image © arne zacher

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
‘no randomness’ exhibition at the 2015 biennale internationale design saint-etienne
image © pierre grasset

 

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
the set design for the exhibition is conceived by oscar lhermitte and stinsensqueeze
image © pierre grasset

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
simple plywood platforms feature recessed shapes defining the significance of the objects on show
image © pierre grasset

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
pantone 152 – safety orange presented across a range of products
image © pierre grasset

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
why an A4 sheet measures 210 mm by 297 mm
image © pierre grasset

oscar lhermitte curates no randomness for saint-etienne design biennale
octagonal stop sign
image © pierre grasset

oscar lhermitte no randomness saint etienne design biennale designboom

variety of pasta shapes which reference everyday objects
image © pierre grasset

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy

PRODUCT LIBRARY

a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

design news

×
keep up with our daily and weekly stories
508,214 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample
designboom magazine