Interview with the curators: Kråkvik&D’Orazio

Behind the creative studio Kråkvik&D’Orazio is the Norwegian-Italian duo Jannicke Kråkvik and Alessandro D'Orazio. Thanks to their distinctive and eclectic aesthetic, expressed in their styling, curation and concept development for an array of private and commercial clients, they have carved out a leading position within their field, both at home in Norway and abroad.

Together they run the interior design store Kollekted By in Oslo, and in 2018 they launched the new design brand A Part, in collaboration with designers Falke Svatun and Bjørn van den Berg. After a year’s hiatus from curating Norwegian Presence, Kråkvik&D'Orazio are returning to the exhibition to coordinate the design and crafts section of JOIN.

How do the selected objects reflect the exhibition title JOIN? 
Jannicke Kråkvik (JK): The word ‘join' is the big concept encapsulating the whole. It relates to how an object is made, how someone collaborates or how a product can bring people together. It is a very social word.

What have been the most important criteria in your curatorial process? 
JK: We wanted to work with a selection of objects showing that the designer or craft artist had challenged themselves through shapes, materials or technical aspects. The exhibited objects also highlight how the boundaries between craft and design aren’t as clear as before. This is exciting, and something we wanted to highlight. It’s caused by a change in generation, but also by people today working in slightly different ways. Designers no longer design solely for mass production. Many work on a smaller scale, selling their work directly.

Alessandro D'Orazio (AD): Saying that, we have also considered aesthetics in combination with commercial value. Unique objects are juxtaposed with products we believe can compete in an international market.

Sustainability is a key word for this exhibition. How is this echoed in the objects on display?
JK: Why should we design a new thing? It’s about the principle. In addition to aesthetics, which of course is important, the object must have a value in terms of materiality or durability. The items we have chosen must give something in return through longevity, decomposability or through the way in which they are produced.

What does the exhibition say about Norwegian contemporary design and crafts?
JK: They’re at a very high level. Norway doesn’t have the same design traditions as the other Scandinavian countries, and Norwegian designers are generally very free in their approach. This playfulness shines through in this selection. Also, there are a lot of new names this year, which is always fun to see. 

AD: It is a huge honour to be allowed to work with all these highly skilled craft artists and designers – in some cases all the way from idea to finished product. We learn from each other, all of us. JOIN is a joint development.