From the city to the vase: a matter of scale

A kindergarten by Cobe is the starting point for the Facade collection, a collaboration between the Danish architecture firm, the Hay brand and the product designers from Kilo.

This is a story that involves three protagonists, a building and four vases.
Once upon a time – and, in a certain sense, even today – there was the “city of the elderly”, or De Gamles By in the local language. Today, this city has “shrunk” and turned into a neighbourhood of Copenhagen, where a daycare centre, completed in 2014 by the architecture studio Cobe, is the latest “symptom” of this new vitality. More than an actual construction, Forfatterhuset is a building, a forest, an institution and a playground that, in addition to children, interacts with the various age groups living in the area, which is one of the most populated in the city. Its architects imagined it with rounded edges, niches and green rooftops, cladding it with “slat” bricks arranged vertically to mark the spaces and allow them to be scanned visually.

COBE, Forfatterhuset Kindergarten, Copenhagen, Danimarca. Foto Rasmus Hjortshøj

Today, thanks to the collaboration between Cobe, brand Hay and the design studio Kilo, Forfatterhuset has “shrunk” even more and become a vase. On the question of why this experimentation with scale, the architecture firm replies that “at Cobe we work a lot on extending the personal sphere into the urban landscape, and we found it interesting to try to bring the sense of the city back into the domestic environment”.

Cobe also told us how Forfatterhuset was chosen: “the building made it possible to directly link architecture and product. The collection recalls the kindergarten while maintaining the overall quality and DNA of the design. Even the plants in the pots resemble the building's green roof gardens”.

Making of the Facade collection. Courtesy Kilo

These small, handy domestic objects share with their model the
same material, terracotta, and the same vertical pattern, in ridges.
The collection is called Facade and “there was a lot of teamwork and effort on the part of all the players involved” according to the co-founder and creative director of Hay Accessories, Mette Hay, “to develop a production method that could allow us to offer it to the public at large”. From cities to vases.

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