Heading Outdoors

The urge to go outside is a fundamental human longing
Exhibition, Heading Outdoors, Die Neue Sammlung – The Design Museum, München, from October 29, 2021; Pinakothek der Moderne, Kunstareal.
Photo: Die Neue Sammlung (K. Mewes)

About the exhibition

Into the outdoors 
Today, many people want to go outdoors.
Outdoors can be nature, a park, a garden or even the city.
You can spend your free time outdoors alone or together with other people. 
People have always wanted to be outdoors.
You can also see this in design.
Design is art for our everyday lives.
Objects that are designed for indoors and outdoors show
that we want to be outdoors. 
For example, objects that are portable or that you can fold.
Designers also often take nature as an example for design. 
The whole exhibition is made of material that is recycled and that you can reuse.
Recycled means:
We made something new from old materials.
A footbridge leads you through this exhibition.
It is also made from recycled and reusable material. 
The objects in the exhibition show that design always depends 
on different things.
It depends on the time when it is created and on society.
Let us take plastic as an example:  In the past, it was very popular. 
Today, it is a problem for the environment. 
The exhibition wants you to think about these questions: 
What do people do in nature?
For example: People go on holiday or do sports in nature. 
How do we connect private spaces and public spaces?
For example: Because of COVID, private meetings take place in public parks. 
How do we want to treat the environment in the future? 
Outdoors and indoors
Designers often take nature as an example.

They also did so in the middle of the last century:
They looked at the shapes that you find in nature and they took these shapes indoors.

They worked together with an Italian company called Gufram.

The designers often used a special style called 
Pop Art.

Pop Art connects art and everyday life.

Pop is short for “popular”.
 It means that many people like something.

With Pop Art, the designers wanted to make design fun and playful.
They often used plastic.

With plastic, they could produce many new shapes.
They created a big plastic plant, for example.

This way, the designers showed 
how much they liked the new material plastic.
 They also showed that society is always changing.

Sitting outdoors
garden is closely linked to the history of chairs.
100 years ago, most garden chairs were made of iron or wood.
Today, most garden chairs are made of plastic.
Plastic is a cheap material that comes in bright colours.

You can use plastic for many different things.

For example, you can create round shapes with plastic.

In the middle of the last century, many people were interested in space travel.
The round shape is closely linked to space travel,
because the capsules of spaceships are round.

Space travel stands for the future and for dreaming.
And so do round objects 
like a plastic garden chair with a round shape.

Today, we want furniture that can go indoors and outdoors.

And we want sustainable furniture.

Sustainable means: The furniture lasts for a long time and we need little raw materials when we produce it.

Raw materials are wood or oil, for example.

Camping in East Germany
In the past, Germany was split into 2 countries.

West Germany and East Germany.
East Germany was also called German Democratic Republic.

It was an independent country for 40 years.

But since more than 30 years, Germany is 1 country again.

People in East Germany 
were not allowed to travel to many countries.

They especially liked camping:
 They often slept in tents during their holidays.
Camping shows what we long for: 
nature, holidays, freedom and making our own decisions.

The objects you use for camping are very handy.

You can fold them and stack them.

They are also light and stable.

This is still important for camping objects today.

Moving around in the city
The way we move around in the city changes a lot.
Today, 2 things are very important:

1.  Many people share vehicles with others.

2. More and more vehicles move with electricity,
not with petrol or diesel.

In this exhibition, you will see different ways to move around: 
skateboards, scooters and different bikes.
Today, there are more and more 
electric bikes and electric scooters. 
Electric means that they move with electricity.

You will find them at many places around Munich.
Renting them is quick and easy.

This way, many people can use the electric bikes and scooters.

But there are also problems with these new inventions.

They can be bad for the environment:

When we produce them, we need many raw materials.

Raw materials are wood or oil, for example.

It can also be difficult to get rid of old vehicles.

Doing sports outdoors
In our museum, there is equipment for summer sports 
and for winter sports,
 like water sports or mountain climbing.

People also do sports in the Alps.

The Alps are very high mountains in several countries.
In the Alps, people enjoy doing sports like climbing, sledging, skiing and kayaking.

A kayak is a boat.

Many things are changing 
when it comes to sports and sport equipment.

For example, there are objects now that are easy to transport.

Like skis that you can fold or kayaks that you can take to pieces.

 Today, it is also important that the equipment is sustainable.
 Sustainable means:
The equipment lasts for a long time.

We produce it close to where we live.

We need little raw materials when we produce it.
Raw materials are wood or oil, for example.

Sports show that we want to be in nature.

But it can be bad for the environment and for nature if too many people want to go outdoors.
The park and the pandemic
We have to keep a distance to other people 
of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pandemic means:
A very contagious disease spreads around the whole world.

In parks and green spaces, it is easy to keep a distance.

This is why parks are very popular now.

People found new ideas to answer these questions:

• How can we meet other people and be safe?

• How can we keep a distance to each other?

• How can we keep parks clean?

Windy sky
Colours are very important in design.

They were also important to 2 designers
Otl Aicher and Eberhard Stauß.

Around 40 years ago,
 they picked the colours for the airport in Munich.
They thought of the colours of nature in Upper Bavaria.

The 2 designers called one of the main colours light airport blue.
It is a bright colour.

When the designers created this colour,

they thought of the light in the Pre-Alps.

They especially thought of the colour of the sky when there is a wind called foehn.

Foehn is a dry and warm wind from the Alps.

When there is foehn, you have a clear view of the mountains.

Ansicht eines auseinandergebauten Kajaks aus Kunststoff
Michael Müller, Kajak NATSEQ, 2018/2019, Kayak Innovations (Deutschland).
Photo: Die Neue Sammlung (K. Mewes)
Im Vordergrund ein einfach zusammenklappbarer Ski, dahinter ein Schlitten, Kletterseile und ein
Exhibition, Heading Outdoors, Die Neue Sammlung – The Design Museum, München, from October 29, 2021; Pinakothek der Moderne, Kunstareal.
Photo: Die Neue Sammlung (K. Mewes)
Verschiedene Stadträder. Roller und Skateboard
Exhibition, Heading Outdoors, 2021.
Photo: Die Neue Sammlung (K. Mewes)

Short video on the exhibition

Short video on the exhibition “Heading Outdoors” with the curators Dr. Polina Gedova und Christopher Haaf M.A.
by Katalog film, Munich© Die Neue Sammlung

Curated by:

Polina Gedova, Christopher Haaf

Cooperation partners:

Dok.fest München, Goetheinstitut, Kunstareal München, Hochschule für Musik und Theater München, Münchner Volkshochschule