PLAYFULLY SUBVERSIVE AND DARINGLY PLAYFUL: LUMINAIRE CELEBRATES A DROOG DESIGN SEVEN YEAR RETROSPECTIVE WITH GIJS BAKKER
Monday, January 1, 2001
'Droog is not a style; it is a mentality and an approach to the creative process. If a design engages and examines existing materials with the goal of creating a practical, simple object- and if the creative concept is both revelatory and inspirational-we can then call that object Droog.' - Renny Ramakers, director of Droog Design.

On Thursday, January 25, Gijs Bakker, renowned designer and co-founder of Droog Design with art historian Renny Ramakers, held a well attended lecture at the Zolla/Lieberman Gallery in Chicago. Bakker share his insights of Droog practices and history with a captivated audience. Following the lecture, a celebratory reception marked the opening of the Droog Design Seven Year Retrospective at Luminaire.

Guests learned that Droog Design was established in the Netherlands in 1993 as a platform for contemporary Dutch design. Under the guidance of Bakker and Ramakers, Droog soon expanded its scope to embrace the work of an international network of contemporary designers. The Dutch word for "dry," as in "dry wit," and unadorned or simple, droog refers both to the wry sense of humor that characterizes the designs and to the practicality and simplicity of their objects.

As Ramakers once said, 'A Droog object may be witty or politically subversive or neither, and yet the process of creating a Droog design never ceases to offer sharp commentary on how humans interact with each other and our environment.'

Droog often addresses the issue of consumerism, and opens up questions regarding the nature of luxury. Droog posits that luxury is no longer simply a material issue, but rather much more an intellectual challenge. When luxury is a question of attention, Droog can political in natural while at the same time luxurious.

Luminaire's exhibition highlighted many Droog products in the exhibition, including the Milkbottle light by Tejo Remy, a light comprised of three rows of three milk bottles each, just as milk bottles were once sold in the Netherlands. Guests gained a greater understanding of the conflation of concept with aesthetic and function during the evening, and shared stories and laughter while admiring the one-of-a-kind quality and undeniable playfulness of Droog design.