IKEA recently tasked Form Us With Love to design three parts of its new museum; the Introductory Hall, the Democratic Design Gallery and the Interactive Ball Room. IKEA Museum features everything that makes IKEA what it is today, and what it may be tomorrow: the ideas and the driving forces, the people and the furniture, the mistakes and the lessons learned.
The Introductory Hall
Perhaps mostly recognised for his love of essentials, the founder of IKEA, Ingvar Kamprad, wisely decided to focus his business on affordable needs for everyone's home. Today, IKEA remains largely unchanged. With an ambition to set the scene as a somewhat intuitive beginning, Form Us With Love and the project team set out to build the Introductory Hall as a manifestation of IKEA's values-a flat pack journey installed on two sheltering walls. Effectively, a line up of artistically displayed items from the complete IKEA range, leading the visitor into the main exhibition.
"We felt that the first room of the museum should project what IKEA is all about, without feeling daunting," explained John Löfgren, Co-founder and creative director at Form Us With Love. "It should be powerful and inspirational, a mix of well known essential objects and elements of surprise. The aim is an intuitively strong and tactile experience."
The Democratic Design Gallery
Three floors up, in the Democratic Design gallery you are invited behind the scene, getting a fair sneak peek into what's ahead. From first brief to final product, the public is given a chance to explore the formula behind IKEA-in the present, but more importantly in the sustained future. This installation by Form Us With Love, is all about opening up and unveiling previously untold stories about design, product development and quality control, all in place to meet the needs for the next generation.
"As designers collaborating with IKEA, we felt that this was a great opportunity to invite the public into our world," stated Jonas Pettersson, co-founder and CEO of Form Us With Love. "A 'work in progress' atmosphere, where you can touch and feel the various materials that IKEA products are, and will be made from in the future. We wanted to make the gallery a platform to understand the "why" behind the design decisions made."
The Interactive Ball Room
On the top floor of the museum an interactive sculpture is to be found. A large scale pipe construction, designed by Form Us With Love, vertically descends through the atrium, all the way to the ground floor. Inspired by marble runs, the installation allows young (and grown up) visitors to drop and follow the journey of a classic IKEA ball from the mandatory kids play room featured at all IKEA stores.
"We believe IKEA's attention to the youngest generation is worth embodying in the museum, that is why we proposed a playful installation running through the building, mirroring what we as designers experience as true and progressive IKEA DNA," Löfgren concluded.
Photography: Jonas Lindström