Co-founded in Amsterdam by the Droog product designer Gijs Bakker and design historian Renny Ramakers, design label Droog has championed Dutch design while defining a new approach to design by mixing materials and interacting with the user.
How did Droog get its name? The word 'Droog' (pronounced 'droach' with a hard 'ch' as in the word 'loch') has a number of related meanings in Dutch: dry wit; unadorned; direct; matter-of-fact; to the point; and casual.
The Philosophy behind Droog Design
Many of the pieces unveiled in the first Droog exhibition - like Graumans’ 85 Bulbs Chandelier - are now regarded as iconic objects of the early 1990s. Looking back it is easy to see why Droog has become so popular. By the early 1990s contemporary design had rebelled against the self-parodic cacophony of candy coloured plastics and kitsch motifs of the mid-1980s Memphis movement by adopting a restrained, sometimes overly retentive minimalist aesthetic.
Droog was different. It shared the simplicity of minimalism and its careful choice of materials, but deployed humour – albeit a dry or ‘droog’ humour - to strike an emotional bond with the user. Rudy Graumans’ 85 bulb chandelier is an inspired example of lateral thinking in design, but it is impossible not to smile at the verve with which the designer transformed an everyday object like a standard light bulb into a spectacular chandelier.