The Sculptural Minimalist

Since graduating from the Royal Danish Institute of Design, Danish designer Maria Bruun has been creating objects and furniture that push the boundaries between the aesthetic and the functional, the artistic and the commercial.


The Sculptural Minimalist

Since graduating from the Royal Danish Institute of Design, Danish designer Maria Bruun has been creating objects and furniture that push the boundaries between the aesthetic and the functional, the artistic and the commercial.

Working within the tradition of sculptural minimalism, her work brings simple constructions in which everything superfluous has been removed into tight harmony, producing objects that are distinguished by their clean, intentional silhouette. Always focused on the perfection of crafted details, Bruun has a playful, experimental relationship to material, and her work often seeks to explore the potential for engagement between a product and the space it will occupy.

Looking ahead, what do you see as the biggest challenges or invitations for you in your work?

- My focus in recent years has been to transform a subjective artistic practice into more commercially available products. I have been working in the field of tension between design, art, and craft, and seeking to create objects that are not only useful, but also meaningful. From where I stand, I see consumers being increasingly aware and informed, with high demands for the objects they surround themselves with. They want products with longevity, both when it comes to materials and design, and that naturally creates an emphasis on sustainability, both in terms of materials and design quality.

Are there certain themes or motifs, materials, colors, or styles that remain constant for you, no matter the project?

- I mainly work with wood; I feel that the quality of wood is fantastic. The fascination of receiving a log, knowing its time and place in the world. Sawing, cutting, trimming, and planing the wood - controlling the forces by studying its grain and structure, refining its curves and reconstructing it. And that's why I add all that value to a single piece of furniture or object - it fascinates me every time! For me, wood is a material with superpowers, a material that lasts for generations if you repair and maintain it. It contains stories, both emotional, but also in its veins and knobs. It creates a warm atmosphere and it is a living material that moves and changes over time; it has a soulfulness. It has a smell, the wood is a tactile material that contains softness and has a warm touch. It is a material available to all of us - children, adults, skilled, unskilled - and in that way I see wood as a very democratic material.

How did your collaboration with Reform evolve?

- When Reform reached out to me, I was intrigued by their ambition to create a series of handles by a group of female designers. I related to the idea of personalizing your kitchen, and I found it quite interesting to scale for the hand, aiming for a soft touch and a hands-on connection with the wood or material. In the process, we came up with various designs, but essentially we narrowed it down and decided on a design that drew inspiration from classic kitchen knives, where the steel blade is fixed in the rounded wooden shaft with 2-3 steel dowels. This detail is small but iconic, and I think it's beautifully translated in classic woodwork.

What upcoming projects, collaborations, or innovations are you most excited about?

- Besides my collaboration with Reform, I am excited to launch a series of stools, counter stools, and barstools, titled 'Pioneer', with the renowned Danish furniture house Fredericia.

Sustainable Design Effort
At 3daysofdesign, our commitment extends beyond showcasing the latest trends in interior design and furniture. We strive to facilitate meaningful discussions, debate, and actively contribute to pushing forward a more sustainable approach within the realm of interior design and furniture business. Join us in our mission to inspire positive change and promote a greener, more responsible future for the industry.

Events mentioned in this article

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Designers mentioned in this article

Maria Bruun
Maria Bruun Design is a furniture and design studio founded by Maria Bruun, Cand. Design, based in Copenhagen, Denmark. The studio offers full creative direction, furniture and interior design services.

Exhibitors mentioned in this article

Løvstræde 1, 1152 Copenhagen
Since its foundation in 1911, the family-owned company Fredericia has built a strong tradition of beautiful craftsmanship and innovative design, developed in close collaboration with a circle of internationally recognised names. Legendary designers such as Børge Mogensen, Hans J. Wegner, and Nanna Ditzel, as well as contemporary figures like Barber Osgerby, Jasper Morrison, Cecilie Manz, and Maria Bruun, all play a role in shaping Fredericia into the design and craftsmanship institution it is today. Fredericia is a proud B Corp taking part in a global movement where people use business as a force for good—a holistic certification for social and environmental impact, transparency, and accountability.
Gl. Kongevej 76, 1850, Frederiksberg
Rooted in Copenhagen, Reform works with top designers from around the world to elevate everyday life and reimagine what kitchens can be. Their modular collections suit a variety of needs and lifestyles thanks to quality craftsmanship and attention to detail.

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