Droog Design first caught the attention of international critics in 1993 with an exhibition at the Milan Furniture Fair in which the design group’s founders, Gijs Bakker and Renny Ramakers, displayed the work of a number of Dutch designers who shared the same essentially minimalist approach. Among the first members of the collective were Hella Jongerius, Marcel Wanders, and Remy, designers who were featured in MoMA’s 1996 exhibition Contemporary Design from the Netherlands and who have gone on to become contemporary masters.
Droog Design’s first appearance had the strength of a manifesto. In the hangover after the exuberance and excess of the 1980s, designers all over the world turned to a new value system based on economy, simplicity, and responsibility. Many of their objects celebrated ingenuity and poverty of means and elevated them to an aesthetic philosophy; idealism and moralism were the politically correct attitudes of the day. Remy’s ‘You Can’t Lay Down Your Memory ‘Chest of Drawers is made of found drawers held together roughly by a belt. It has the visual impact and provocative intent of a Dada sculpture, minus a Dadaist sense of humor.
Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights since 1980, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, p. 115.