American designer Rachel Griffin, founder of Rotterdam-based Earnest Studio, gives light to the ideas and inspiration behind Kink Vase, a Muuto bestseller that combines traditional craftsmanship with a playful design language.
In 2007, Rachel Griffin pushed pause on her graphic design career and moved from the U.S. to the Netherlands to study at the Design Academy Eindhoven. The shift led Griffin to set up a workshop in Rotterdam, where she founded Earnest Studio to focus on product, lighting, and furniture design. —
“I often begin projects with something physical, such as a tool, a material or a production technique. I rarely have finished products in mind; exploration in and around the starting point eventually defines both form and function. I’m most interested in simple shapes that have a strong relationship to process and material,” says Griffin of her work.
An upshot to her intuitive approach is the Kink Vase, a porcelain vessel she designed for Muuto. “The Kink Vase — named for the two sharp bends that create its suggestive, humanoid form — was an experiment in combining digital and analog processes. Specifically, I was experimenting with Rhino, a digital tool, and slip-casting, a traditional, analog process, to create a form that would not be possible by other means of production,” she says.
“I’m interested in themes of modularity and multiplicity; I prefer simple, flexible structures that do more with less,” Griffin continues. “The crossover between graphic and product design is probably most evident in the products that have a simple, bold silhouette, as well as in in the modular pieces—in the sense that they’re built using a structure being repeated again and again.”
With its singular form, the design offers a new perspective on the traditional flower vase through a combination of modern technology with the time-honored craft of ceramics: “The Kink Vase combines modern technology and traditional craft to produce a unique form, which is simple, graphic and humorous and represents my identity most clearly with its simple, bold form.”
The Kink Vase is slip-cast in porcelain and features a glazed interior for a refined touch. It’s available in three colors: Sand, Light Blue, and Dusty Lilac.