Design as Process –
On the Creation of Writing Utensils


With Special Contributions from
Christoph Niemann

2018.03.03 Sat

2018.04.08 Sun

How does good product design come about?

Taking the Lamy company as an example, this exhibition takes a look at what goes into making our world of things.


“Design. Made in Germany“ – this is what successful German writing tool manufacturer Lamy stands for. Models such as the LAMY safari, one of the most sold fountain pens of all time, have made this Heidelberg-based company popular around the world.


The Lamy success story began over 50 years ago. The LAMY 2000, designed by Gerd A. Müller in 1966, laid the foundation for the clear and functional design language which still defines the style of all Lamy brand products today: the Lamy design.

"thinking tools" documents the design and creation process of Lamy writing tools by means of a number of original prototypes and models, sketches and designs from the Lamy archive in Heidelberg. Exhibits include models such as the LAMY 2000, the LAMY pico and the LAMY safari – as well as the latest innovation from the house of Lamy, the LAMY aion series designed by Jasper Morrison.


The exhibition also shines a light on the individual strategies and methods of the designers engaged by Lamy, including such international greats as Naoto Fukasawa, Richard Sapper and Franco Clivio. Whilst Gerd A. Müller, designer of the LAMY 2000 was still working with wooden models which he produced himself, these days modern 3D printers often serve a useful role in the development of writing implements.


Christoph Niemann

"thinking tools" is prominently supported by Christoph Niemann who developed drawing and installatons especially for the exhibition.


Christoph Niemann is one of the most sought-after contemporary artists. His illustrations are regularly featured on the covers of magazines such as “The New Yorker“,“Time“ and “Wired“. Since 2008 he has been writing and illustrating the The New York Times blog column "Abstract Sunday" – he has published a selection of his contributions in book form under the title "Abstract City". In 2010 he was appointed to the Hall of Fame of the Art Directors Club New York. Niemann is the author of numerous books, including “Sunday Sketching“, “Words“ and “Souvenir“. His most recent projects include the interactive app “Chomp“.

Organizers: C. Josef Lamy GmbH, DKSH Japan K.K.

Venue: 21_21 DESIGN SIGHT Gallery 3

Tokyo Midtown Garden, Tokyo Midtown

9-7-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo

03. 03. 2018 — 08. 04. 2018