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Planter came, Elefantenohr,
Planter came, Elefantenohr

Planter came, Elefantenohr

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Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Ausstellungsstrasse 60
8031 Zurich
Museum map
Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Toni-Areal, Pfingstweidstrasse 94
8031 Zurich
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According to an anecdote, this organically shaped planter came about as follows: Willy Guhl (1915–2004), the founder of the first Swiss course of studies in product design, at the Kunstgewerbeschule Zürich (today ZHdK), paid a visit to the Eternit company in Niederurnen, where his former student Robert Haussmann (b. 1931) was working in the advertising department. At lunch in a nearby restaurant, the two came up with the idea of draping Eternit (asbestos cement) mats over an edge and letting them harden in that position, just like the tablecloth in the restaurant fell in soft drapes over the table edge. Instead of a rectangular shape like the tablecloth, the designers decided to try for a triangle with rounded corners. A photograph documents the moment when Guhl, Haussmann, and the production director, created by hand a so-called elephant ear, which would later go by the official name “Biasca.”

Pflanzgefäss, Elefantenohr
Willy Guhl, 1951
Eternit (Schweiz) AG, CH
Image creditso

Pflanzgefäss, Elefantenohr, 1951, Entwurf: Willy Guhl
Zeichnung: Weicher Umbruch, Zürich