Southern Sweden Creatives: Introducing Stoft

Southern Sweden’s next generation of design talent has been brought together for a unique exhibition at Dutch Design Week, called What’s Your DNA?. Here, the designers share the stories and inspirations behind their work, revealing the common threads running through this young, local design scene.

What’s Your DNA? is taking place during Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven at Klokgebouw 50 from 21st to 29th October. For opening hours and directions visit the website here.

With a name that is the Swedish word for ‘millions of small particles constantly moving and rearranging into new and surprising constellations’, Stoft design studio has a lot to live up to. But a glimpse into the work of Stoft’s trio of designers – Jenny Ekdahl, Ola Nystedt and Joel Herslow – makes it clear that the studio’s consciously gentle, slow and exploratory story-led approach is one that is perfectly suited to their name. Together, their poetic work explores both the importance and possibilities of the latest technological innovations, as well as the age-old traditions of skilled craftsmen.

Your studio’s name is about stories – does your work reflect your own stories?
Jenny Ekdahl Our objects usually begin for emotional reasons and become things that make people think, question or remember something. There’ll be one story urging us to create the object, and others will appear through the material and process – all that becomes entwined. Sometimes these stories are related to us, sometimes not.

How do your backgrounds influence your group work?
Jenny Ekdahl We have Swedish nature in common. For me, it’s the sea – the space, colours and the clear light. Collectively, the forest has a special influence – on me for my grandmother’s fairy tales of its creatures and trolls, for Joel and Ola as a place where they both feel calm.

Are you Swedish designers, or specifically southern Swedish designers?
Jenny Ekdahl Specifically southern Swedish, because being based in Malmö means having a certain freedom. It’s easier to be multidisciplinary, it’s OK to be inspired by wider Europe and rule breaking is expected.

Continue reading in Oak volume Eight