designforum Steiermark
The Orange Age
An exhibition featuring media design of the 70s
© Geopho

The exhibition The Orange Age let us review a dynamic and highly creative era of the 20th century by means of selected objects and exhibits during Designmonat Graz 2017. The around 60 exhibits – Audio and TV devices, communication appliances and office machines – act as historical witnesses, report about the aftermath of the late 1960s and the freedom of colours and shapes, as manifested in the Flower Power Movement, as well as the ideologies and future visions related to the Space Age, arisen from the first moon landing. In terms of design the 1970s were a fantastic era of the individual, in which especially designers from Italy, Germany and France implemented autonomous, European interpretations of Pop Art in their designs, unless towards the end of the decade a strong starting wave of globalisation leveled out individuality in favour of a gigantic mass production.

All objects come from the private archive of Heinz M. Fischer, chairman of the Department Media & Design and head of the Institute for the Media at FH Joanneum (University of Applied Sciences). He owns one of the most comprehensive collections of media in Austria.

The exhibition is a cooperation with the Department of Media & Design of FH Joanneum. Presentation areas for the exhibits of ‘The Orange Age’ are provided by the carpentry of Josef Proedl, namely the HUBs, office furniture designed and made by fantoni in Italy. The exhibition will be displayed in the following months at several locations, inter alia designforum Wien (Vienna) and designforum Vorarlberg.

Heinz M. Fischer: ‘The media design of the 1970s tells a lot about how people dealt with those products. Everything was round, pleasant and people liked to touch and operate the devices like turning the station scan of the radio, which still existed then. Product design was incredibly friendly, open and colorful.’