The next 100 years of furniture design
100 years after Bauhaus, the biggest revolution in the design world, it's easy to look back and understand the historical legacy they left and also its significance for the present. But is it possible that it still keeps having significance in the next 100 years or should we expect a similar revolution?
The world seems to be innovating at an unprecedented speed and there are no signs of changes or slowdowns. We are not yet driving flying cars and living in spacious houses, but there are some significant changes on the way we live now and the interior design world is no exception and is going through rapid changes.
People are increasingly living in smaller and smaller spaces, and not living forever in the same house, which means that furniture also needs to get smaller and more functional. This is a trend that tends to increase and it seems that, perhaps, in the future, people won't own so much furniture as they do now.
In general terms, people tend to have fewer things they can call their own. It doesn’t mean that they will have less stuff, they simply won't need to buy it as they do now. Because they are moving from one house to another more frequently and because of the increasing environmental concerns, people probably will end up buying more quality and less "disposable" furniture or maybe we will be towards a new business model where they rent it instead of buying it.
If you look back 100 or 200 years, furniture hasn’t changed that much. Tables are tables, beds are beds and chairs are chairs. But you can see significant changes in the design. It has become more functional and this trend will continue with the constant request for smaller and more functional furniture.
The big question we will face in the next decades will be: how to design furniture for the future?
We don't have a fast and closed answer, but we can look back to 100 years ago and learn with it. Bauhaus, for example, wasn’t created out of anything. It understood itself as a revolution but rather in the sense of reconstitution or re-invention of tradition. We should learn from, but don't be obsessed with the “Bauhaus of the Future” or the next big revolution of design, but rather in a “future beyond Bauhaus” motivated by the future-orientation of the Bauhaus tradition itself.