Two well-established and well-known Danish companies exhibited at northmodern this year and there was an interesting and very marked contrast in the way each approached the presentation of their products.
The silversmith Georg Jensen opened his first store in Bredgade in Copenhagen in 1904 but the company now has major stores and retail agents Worldwide selling a phenomenal range of silverware, glassware, tableware and jewellery and commissioning work from a wide range of designers. Their display for northmodern was in the main entrance and dramatic with a long pergola in scaffold draped with ivy and a series of long tables set in line and covered with pink linen with products from Georg Jensen set out like the trophies of weapons and and foliage and prizes found carved in swags around fireplaces or painted on panels or along cornices in great palaces and country houses. The display was primarily about self-confidence and justifiable pride in the products of the company … not the place to decide which design you might or might not buy.
Kähler trace their origin back even further to a family-run pottery established in Næstved in 1839. Their stand at northmodern was also about pride in their product and about continuity and customer loyalty. At the centre of the tightly-packed stand was what appeared to be a very efficient desk with computer screen and so on for placing orders … very much the long established role of the trade fair as being a place where manufacturers and buyers from retailers meet and do business.
A display like this shows clearly the importance of a strong back catalogue and the importance of well-established customer loyalty to a brand but it is also an important opportunity to showcase new designs … here a new range from Kähler called Kaolin designed by Cecilie Manz.