Exhibiting Danish Design: The Construction and Travel of National Markers in the Age of Globalization

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    In the age of globalized design culture, products may be designed in one country, manufactured in several countries and marketed globally. In this context, the character and delimitation of national identities of design get blurry: What are, in the end, the specifics of Dutch, US or Danish design? At the same time, national markers play new roles and gains, paradoxically, in importance in his global situation. The “growth of global cultures makes the examination of national and regional cultures even more important” (Fallan & Lees-Maffei), as the national and the regional operate as markers of differentiation and origin. Ontologically, national markers of design may be said to be real as they point to specific phenomena and traditions to be fixed in time and place as well as they are cultural constructs at the verge of being simulacra. In this way, “Danish design” is real as a phenomenon originating in Denmark, but in a high degree constructed with regard to the affiliated cultural associations.The paper will investigate the construction of national markers in exhibitions aimed to promote or profile Danish design. The paper will take its starting point in the exhibition Everyday Life—Signs of Awareness (2017, displayed at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan) and relate it to earlier promotion exhibitions such as the Design in Scandinavia travel exhibition in the US and Canada in the 1950’s and Dansk Form in Hamburg in 2000. In its methodological approach, the paper will analyze the aesthetic means employed at the exhibitions to construct the national markers of Danish design. The purpose is to understand the mechanisms for constructing a certain profile for Danish design and how this construction operates within a global design culture where aesthetic means and value propositions travel across borders and exchange meanings.
    Publikationsdatosep. 2018
    Antal sider1
    StatusUdgivet - sep. 2018
    BegivenhedDesign History Society Annual Conference: Design and Displacement - Parsons The New School of Design, New York, USA
    Varighed: 6. sep. 20188. sep. 2018


    KonferenceDesign History Society Annual Conference
    LokationParsons The New School of Design
    ByNew York


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