Maria Bruun: “Exploring new and untested potentials”

April 23rd, 2020
Written by:
The Mindcraft Project

Maria Bruun at the latest edition of CHART Design. Set design: Pernille Andersen. Photo: Benita Marcussen.

In a Q&A series, the designers and artists participating in The Mindcraft Project tell us about their process, what they are working on, how they use their favorite tool and generally what they are into right now. A warm welcome to Maria Bruun.

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What I do in my studio:
My work arises from three bases. I work independently with furniture and products within the commercial genre, where I collaborate with companies, clients and industry. I also work within the collectible design genre, where I create series or objects that are purchased by order for private clients. In addition, I am co-founder of the design duo MBADV (together with architect Anne Dorthe Vester) were we work with projects in the intersection between architecture, design and crafts. I am also co-founder of the RE F O R M Design Biennale, which serves as a platform for a new generation of designers.

Receiving materials. Photo courtesy of Maria Bruun.

Essential working tool:
My most essential working tool is a constant dialogue between the individual detail and the overall whole.

What I work on at the moment:
I am currently working on a new collection of furniture to be presented at an international fair for collectible design later this year. I will present a variation of objects, made in walnut, mirror, stainless steel and leather, under the overall title Reflected Surroundings. I work with themes like, ‘who are we in our space’ and ‘how does the objects we surround ourselves with affect our self-understanding’.

Best design experience I had recently:
Over the past year, I have had conversations with renowned designers Edvard Barber and Jay Osgerby and they have given me feedback on my work. In that context, what stands out most clearly to me as the best design experience this year is sharing knowledge with other designers and professionals who openly and warmly share their experience, so that I can become a more skilled designer and gain greater insight into my own practice, as well as exploring new and untested potentials.

Workshop proces with Andrea Stokholm. Photo by Andrea Stokholm.

Favorite material:
Wood. The quality of the wood is amazing. The fascination of receiving a log, knowing its time and place in the world. To saw, cut, trim and plan the wood – controlling the forces studying its veins and structure, refining its curves and re-constructing it. And consequently, adding all that value into a single piece of furniture or object – it fascinates me every time!

What I listen to when I work:
The machines I work with. Currently, I work at the Danish Art Workshops with the CNC milling machine. It is important to be able to listen carefully and make sure that the material and the machine are working properly together.

Next travel destination when traveling is possible again:
Japan. With my friend and colleague Anne Dorthe Vester. We will travel to Japan to work on a specific furniture assignment for a Japanese client. It is my first encounter with Japan, and I am very excited to experience such a strong culture. From a purely aesthetic and craft perspective, I have been fascinated by Japan since my eyes were opened to design, I look forward to experiencing it on my own body and with my own eyes.

Biggest inspiration:
I could look back in time and mention Utzon, Ditzel, Prouvé and Perriand. But most of all, I’m inspired by those I work closely together with – here and now!

3 Things I’m Into Right Now:
Mirrors, microcosmos and self-growth.