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Press Kit
| no: 1696-01
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Press kit - Press release - Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award
A v2com exclusive

Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history

Essen, Germany

Red Dot Award

Anniversary exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form”: Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history


Essen, Germany, 2015-04-13 -

60 years of award-winning design – what began as “Permanent Show of Elegant Industrial Products” in 1955 has become the world’s largest exhibition of contemporary design: About 2,000 exhibits are presented in the Red Dot Design Museum Essen. Back then, like today, all of the exhibits were assessed by an independent expert jury and awarded for their outstanding design quality. The Design Zentrum NRW has been organising the internationally renowned competition for design, now the Red Dot Design Award, since 1955. 


On the occasion of this anniversary, the Ruhr Museum and Red Dot Design Museum in Germany’s Ruhr metropolis are presenting an exhibition on 60 years of design history in Essen. It is the first cooperation of the two largest museums at Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site. With the title “Enduring, not ultimate form”, the joint exhibition will place a spotlight on the highlights of Red Dot’s history. 


From 29 June until 23 August 2015, visitors to Hall 5 of Zollverein can go on a journey through the history of award-winning design – from “Industrieform”, the original name of the award organisation, to Red Dot. The exhibition presents current and historical exhibits and reconstructs highlights of former presentations.

Posters and photographs from the last six decades are documented alongside eyewitness accounts. 


Professor Dr Peter Zec, President Design Zentrum NRW and founder of Red Dot, is looking forward to the project: “In the same way that design has constantly changed and developed over the years, so too has our institution always kept abreast of change. This is why this journey into the past, back to the roots of the Red Dot, is something very special and extremely exciting.”


The initiators of the anniversary show, Prof Dr Peter Zec and Prof Heinrich Theodor Grütter, Director of Ruhr Museum, are pleased about another prominent supporter: The President of the German parliament, Prof Dr Norbert Lammert, will assume the patronage of the exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form”. 


Born close to the city of Essen, the top-ranking politician is aware of the increasing importance of good design and of the Red Dot Award: “Design in its language of form is an important part of our culture – it is formative and at the same time a reflection of the Zeitgeist. We now live in a highly stylised society in which recognition has enormous, not least economic importance. This is because clever design ensures attention on a global market of exchangeability. But attention itself is not always a seal of quality. Just how important good design is (or has become) is demonstrated by the success story of the Red Dot Design Award as the world’s biggest competition for product design – ‘made in the Ruhr region’.” 


The title of the exhibition “Enduring, not ultimate form” is a quote by journalist Clara Menck which was created in relation to the design exhibition in the 1950s. The phrase refers to the timelessness of the basic form of day-to-day objects: This “enduring” quality is only made complete through constant change and optimisation. For example, while the design of a chair is entrenched in people’s lasting collective memory, there will never be the “ultimate” chair. 


“Enduring, not ultimate form” 

60 years of design history in Essen – from “Industrieform” to Red Dot 

A joint exhibition by Ruhr Museum and Red Dot Design Museum Essen 


Exhibition duration:

29 June – 23 August 2015 


Exhibition location:

Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site Areal A [Schacht/Shaft XII], Hall 5 [A5] 

Gelsenkirchener Straße 181 

45309 Essen Germany 

- 30 -


Media contact
  • Red Dot Design Museum Essen
  • Marie-Christine Sassenberg, Senior Communications Manager 
  • m.sassenberg@red-dot.de 
  • +49 201 30104-43 
Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition -  The professors Heinrich Theodor Grütter, Director of Ruhr Museum, and Dr. Peter Zec, founder and CEO of Red Dot, in the yet empty premises of Hall 5 of the UNESCO world heritage Zollverein in Essen, Germany. The first design exhibition from 1955 will be re-arranged here.<span lang="EN-GB"></span>  - Photo credit: Red Dot<br>
The professors Heinrich Theodor Grütter, Director of Ruhr Museum, and Dr. Peter Zec, founder and CEO of Red Dot, in the yet empty premises of Hall 5 of the UNESCO world heritage Zollverein in Essen, Germany. The first design exhibition from 1955 will be re-arranged here.
Photo credit: Red Dot
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - The Red Dot Design Museum Essen, largest exhibition of contemporary design in the world, at the world heritage site Zollverein.<br> - Photo credit: Red Dot<br>
The Red Dot Design Museum Essen, largest exhibition of contemporary design in the world, at the world heritage site Zollverein.
Photo credit: Red Dot
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - Inside the Red Dot Design Museum Essen: 2,000 award-winning objects.<br> - Photo credit:  Red Dot<br>
Inside the Red Dot Design Museum Essen: 2,000 award-winning objects.
Photo credit: Red Dot
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - A glimpse into the past: Picture of the first jury decision-based design exhibition in Essen, 1955, which later became world-famous under the name Red Dot Design Museum.  - Photo credit:  &nbsp;Historisches Archiv Krupp, Essen<br>
A glimpse into the past: Picture of the first jury decision-based design exhibition in Essen, 1955, which later became world-famous under the name Red Dot Design Museum.
Photo credit:  Historisches Archiv Krupp, Essen
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - „The Design Mecka“ – Essen’s Red Dot Design Museum is the largest exhibition of contemporary design worldwide. Visitors are are constantly stunned by the beauty of the former boiler house with the hanging aluminium body of an Audi A8 in its main hall.  - Photo credit: Red Dot Design Museum / Simon Bierwald<br>
„The Design Mecka“ – Essen’s Red Dot Design Museum is the largest exhibition of contemporary design worldwide. Visitors are are constantly stunned by the beauty of the former boiler house with the hanging aluminium body of an Audi A8 in its main hall.
Photo credit: Red Dot Design Museum / Simon Bierwald
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - Design awards since 1955 in Essen: The Red Dot Gala at the Aalto-Theater, Essen’s opera house – traditionally presented by Professor Dr Peter Zec. - Photo credit: Red Dot<br>
Design awards since 1955 in Essen: The Red Dot Gala at the Aalto-Theater, Essen’s opera house – traditionally presented by Professor Dr Peter Zec.
Photo credit: Red Dot
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - The "Max Braun-Raum" - a place for award-winning Braun products in the first design exhibition, 1955.<br> - Photo credit:  Historisches Archiv Krupp, Essen
The "Max Braun-Raum" - a place for award-winning Braun products in the first design exhibition, 1955.
Photo credit: Historisches Archiv Krupp, Essen
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - Logo of the Red Dot Design Museum Essen.<br> - Photo credit: Red Dot<br>
Logo of the Red Dot Design Museum Essen.
Photo credit: Red Dot
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition - Logo of the renowned Ruhr Museum, cooperation partner for the historical design exhibition in Essen.<br> - Photo credit: Ruhr Museum<br>
Logo of the renowned Ruhr Museum, cooperation partner for the historical design exhibition in Essen.
Photo credit: Ruhr Museum
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Press kit | 1696-01 - Press release | Red Dot Award celebrates 60 years of design history - Red Dot Award - Event + Exhibition -  Prof Dr Norbert Lammert, president of the German parliament, becomes patron of Red Dot’s anniversary. In terms of protocol, he ranks second in Germany only to the President of the  Federal Republic.  - Photo credit: Achim Melde<br>
Prof Dr Norbert Lammert, president of the German parliament, becomes patron of Red Dot’s anniversary. In terms of protocol, he ranks second in Germany only to the President of the Federal Republic.
Photo credit: Achim Melde
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