The name chosen for the studio makes reference to the nature and fjords of Norway, but the design it expresses speaks the metropolitan language of Berlin. It shares the city’s ecological spirit and the focus on intelligent mobility, as can be seen in the projects for recharging stations for electric cars, or the tricycle to transport things but also children, protected by a special seat.
Formfjord is an industrial design studio located in the German capital, founded in 2006 by Fabian Baumann, now a young father at the age of 38. He works with a young team of designers and engineers. This combination of technical creativity offers a precise key of interpretation for the studio and for Fabian himself, with a degree in Engineering from the Berlin Polytechnic and another in Industrial Designer from the Delft Polytechnic, the largest and oldest technical university in the Netherlands.
The studio’s design manifesto sets out to use these two perspectives to develop products that function perfectly in terms of technique, ecology, ergonomics, emotions, strategy and economics. The ambitious coexistence of factors starts with the principle, in the words of Formfjord: “Design is the successful synthesis of function, material, form, technology, brand and emotion.” The team monitors the entire development, from the concept to the point of sale, paying close attention to brand strategies and lifestyle changes, which first appear as weak signals precisely in large multicultural urban areas like Berlin.
Besides intelligent mobility, the other applied passion is lighting. First of all, after three years of collaboration with the Ubitricity electric bicycle rental service, a brilliant tool has been invented, a sort of recharger combined with a pocket energy meter that makes it possible to recharge a vehicle from any socket and charge it to one’s own account
For the world of light, Formfjord has designed a wide range of fixtures, including experiments for Kaneka Japan, an airy suspension lamp for Fabbian, designed by Baumann with his right-hand man Sönke Hoof, formed by 32 rings of metal wire to make a sphere, and the App applique, with an interchangeable graphic diffuser, recent winner of the Interieur Innovation Award 2016 and the Design Plus 2016.
Mobility and light, two great passions and forms of expertise whose factor in common is energy.
Text by Virginio Briatore