Back to the top

Design matters

Vitra Summit - Day 1, Thursday, 22 October AM EST

Is there such a thing as a good or bad material? Or only correct and incorrect use? What impact have past crises had on interiors throughout history? This session features a conversation with Christian Grosen Rasmussen, Chief Design Officer at Vitra, moderated by Jan Boelen, the Creative Director of Atelier Luma. Other participants will include industrial designer Konstantin Grcic, Faber Futures Founder Natsai Audrey Chieza, Princeton Professor Beatriz Colomina and freelance writer Kyle Chayka.


  • Beatriz Colomina, Architecture Historian, Theorist and Curator
  • Christian Grosen Rasmussen, Chief Design Officer, Vitra
  • Francis Kéré, Architect
  • Götz Rehn, CEO, Alnatura
  • Hella Jongerius, Designer
  • Jan Boelen, Artistic Director, Atelier Luma
  • Konstantin Grcic, Designer
  • Kyle Chayka, Writer
  • Natsai Audrey Chieza, Founder and CEO, Faber Futures
  • Mateo Kries, Director, Vitra Design Museum
  • Rolf Fehlbaum, Chairman Emeritus, Vitra
  • Virgil Abloh, Artist, Architect, Engineer, Creative Director and Fashion Designer

Design matters programme

Day 1, Thursday 22 October, AM EST, American Time Zones

8 AM – 9 AM EST – Material matters
Materials are the core of design. As our environmental awareness evolves, so does our choice of materials when designing objects and interiors. Can design contribute to a responsible use of materials? Is it possible to make design more sustainable? Can we create, develop, produce and consume in alternative ways and protect the interests of the next generations? This panel looks at contemporary examples that are shaping an ecofriendly future.

Participants: Christian Grosen Rasmussen, Jan Boelen, Konstantin Grcic, Natsai Audrey Chieza
9 AM – 10 AM EST – A history of the impact of crises on interiors
In this session we question the impact of crises on interiors. Two leading figures give us an historic retrospective on how life-changing events influenced our way of designing interiors. Historian Beatriz Colomina presents her research on how tuberculosis had an impact on architecture and spaces and was at the source of the modern movement. Art and design critic Kyle Chayka, who specialises in minimalism, looks into further details at how the Coronavirus crisis has had an impact on architecture and speaks with a number of leading voices in the field.

Participants: Beatriz Colomina, Götz Rehn, Kyle Chayka, Mateo Kries
10 AM – 10.30 AM EST – The cantilever chair: a historical review & world premiere of a new design by Jasper Morrison
Rolf Fehlbaum, Chairman Emeritus of Vitra, and Mateo Kries, Director of the Vitra Design Museum, will offer historical insights into this chair typology and also discuss the innovation potential of cantilever seating.

Participants: Mateo Kries, Rolf Fehlbaum
10.30 AM – 11 AM EST – Aesthetics after 2020?
How will aesthetics be impacted by the social and environmental developments of 2020? The speakers of the Vitra Summit, respond to one question.

The following content themes are optimized for United States time zones

The following content themes are optimized for European time zones

Weitere Themen

Büros, gemeinsam genutzte Räume oder das eigene Zuhause – welche Themen sind wichtig? Welche Prozesse werden die Zukunft der Arbeit prägen? In einer Zeitschriften-Serie über die Welt der Arbeit und aktuelle Themen von globaler Tragweite laden wir Designer, Architekten und Branchenexperten ein, uns ihre Sicht der Dinge zu erläutern.

Sie benötigen Hilfe bei einem Projekt? Unsere Experten-Teams sind an Ihrer Seite!