Vitra x Studio Riebenbauer

What the fuck is Heimat?

For many years now, Vitra has been busy dealing with the constructed identity of companies. But how does Vitra gain access to the key decision-makers in digital companies like Google, Adobe, AirBnB and WeWork? Off the beaten track and away from familiar sales mechanisms?

Together with Vitra, we developed the concept »What the fuck is Heimat?« as a solution.

Heimat is a German word translating to »home« or »homeland«. Which isn’t the meaning of it. »Heimat« has no exact English equivalent. »Heimat« is no place –
»Heimat« is a feeling.

After an intense day at the workshop in San Francisco, the »Heimat« of Nicholas Ruiz of Adobe, Jonathan Chung of Google, Aaron Harvey of AirBnB and Lauryn Menard was developed on the basis of a very personal »Heimat« package and questionnaire.

The Heimat objectives were delivered at an end-of-year follow-up and the participants were photographed with their personal Heimat objectives by Ashley Batz.

What sounds abstract at first is actually an entirely new approach – to position Vitra as a strategic partner. A partner that facilitates innovation and development in a company through a constructed identity, perceptible with all the senses.

And to make potential clients see Vitra in a completely new light, that works intensely with its clients at brand and culture level.

Jonathan Chung, Google

This object represents the Heimat of Jonathan Chung, who works as a creative director at Google. He grew up in Korea – a country with a strong tradition and values that are very different from those of the US. This object represents the interplay between Korea and the US.

The earth from the town in Korea he grew up in – treasured in a glass cylinder. The earth is in stark contrast to the outer layer – a material called Glebanite. It’s a new material made from recycled glass fibres. This object is about the contrasts in his life: two completely different cultures, lifestyles and needs.



Vienna Design Week

Before the Heimat objectives were presented in San Francisco, they could already be discovered in Vienna during Vienna Design Week.

In addition to the objectives, an installation was designed and displayed in collaboration with Eames DKR Wire Chairs.



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