Orange – and more exhibition celebrates Fiskamin
Fiskars Corp. Press Release April 3, 2014
As Finland’s oldest company, Fiskars, celebrates its 365th anniversary, it is time to take a look at the more recent history, too. On April 4, 2014, the Orange – and more exhibition opens at the Design Museum Arabia Gallery. Featuring Fiskars 1960s Fiskamin tableware, the exhibition celebrates innovation and the color that became a global triumph.
Every now and again, along comes a decade that has a long-lasting effect on the future. Changes that came about in the 1960s were all-pervasive, reaching into everything from politics to clothes, from family planning to popular music. Design, too, was at the forefront of change. One of the decade’s most far-reaching upheavals occurred in the manufacture of objects and furniture. The change was sparked off by a new material, plastic.
“Our company’s history includes many great stories, one of which is about the birth of Fiskamin. This new tableware bore witness to great change and its importance has continued to grow over the years. I see Fiskamin as a milestone, marking a crucial step in Fiskars becoming the global consumer goods company it is today. The 1960s was a fascinating period that can still inspire us, even today – and in the future,” says Max Alfthan, Chief Strategy Officer for Fiskars.
By the 1960s, Fiskars had become a manufacturer of tools and particularly knowledgeable about metal. However, the company was keen to try out new ideas and, indeed, the people at Fiskars were among the first to make enthusiastic use of the new material. The potential of plastic was explored under the leadership of Fiskars chief designer, Olof Bäckström. Designers Gittan Landström (later Kokko) and Mattias Ingman were tasked with designing a new kind of tableware, made of melamine. The Fiskamin range also inadvertently contributed to the birth of Fiskars most iconic product, the orange-handled scissors.
“The uniqueness of classics-in-the-making is their ability to transcend the boundaries of time and place. We are fascinated by thoughts of what the Fiskamin range would look like in 2014 if it, like the orange-handled scissors, had been kept in production all this time,” says Ia Adlercreutz, Head of Brand and Concept Development, Fiskars Kitchen, who has curated the exhibition together with exhibition architect Linda Bergroth.
Inspiration for the Orange – and more exhibition came from Fiskamin collector Mikko Aalto’s book The Birth of Color, which tells, from a collector’s point of view, the story of the Fiskamin range. Illustrations in the book are by Philippe Gueissaz.
The Orange – and more exhibition is open April 4 –June 1, 2014. Tue–Fri, 12–6 p.m. / Sat–Sun, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. at Design Museum Arabia, Hämeentie 135 A, Helsinki. The Arabia Design Museum and the Design Museum Arabia Gallery are part of the Design Museum. www.designmuseum.fi
Photographsof Fiskamin products are available on the Fiskars website at www.fiskarsgroup.com/media/image-bank
Fiskamin tableware range consisted of between 130 and 150 different pieces, ranging in size from small eggcups to large bowls. The melamine tableware, with its modern minimalist design, looked good, was practical to use and easy to care for. It came in ten standard colors, plus some special colors. The most popular colors were orange, red, lime green and white.
The Fiskamin range offered design at its best for everyday use. One could wake up to the Fiskamin marmalade pot, have a morning-break brew out of the coffee cup, and take the plates from home to the summer cottage. Fiskamin became familiar to a lot of Finns during summer camps, hikes, and fishing trips. At Finlandia Hall, cakes were served during interval on a specially-designed range of white Fiskamin dishes.
Fiskars 365 – celebrating centuries of pride, passion and design. Every day.
Established in 1649 as an ironworks in a small Finnish village, Fiskars has grown to be a leading global supplier of consumer products for the home, garden and outdoors. Available in more than 60 countries, Fiskars products solve everyday problems, making daily home, garden and outdoor projects easier and more enjoyable through their superior performance and design. Fiskars is listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki, and in 2013 the company’s net sales were 799 million euro. The group’s key international brands are Fiskars, Iittala and Gerber. www.fiskarsgroup.com/365