Launched at ISH in Frankfurt, Kaldewei’s Miena washbasin bowls are made with a single layer of steel enamel and exude a super-minimalist aesthetic whilst at the same time having the hard-wearing qualities that this material can offer.
Created by German designer Anke Salomon, the Miena washbasins are available in round and rectangular versions, both in two different sizes. What is completely new about the range however, is the diversity of colour. As well as the classic bathroom colours, customers can choose from the shades of the Kaldewei’s Coordinated Colours Collection, offering a total of 12 colour options.
Salomon said: “Washbasin bowls are highly visual. Since they sit majestically on top of a piece of furniture it is essential that the bowls possess a special, emotional aesthetic. At the same time, they should not be too polarising so that they work with other bathroom products and leave creative scope for a wide range of different architectural designs.
“The special feature of the Miena washbasin bowls is the way they successfully combine scale and ne- edged delicate owing lines. This contrast is so striking that it was important to pare down the formal design in order to develop a harmonious, benign product. The design is based on clean-lined, timeless basic geometrical shapes that have, however, been easily freed from pure geometry in a natural, fluid way – quiet yet special.”
Their fluid lines lend the Miena washbasins a remarkable lightness while the distinctive properties of steel enamel further heighten the impression of purity. The new washbasin bowls can be placed on a support plate or console, so are not restricted to the dimensions of the bathroom furniture. Since the Miena washbasins are fitted with an enamelled waste cove, they can be combined with a wide range of bathtubs and enamelled shower surfaces from Kaldewei’s portfolio, for what the German manufacturer refers to as the ‘perfect match’ approach.
The new collection was the result of a thorough collaborative process between designer and manufacturer.
“Sometimes you’re lucky and the industrial production process works in tandem with the initial ideas for the design and that’s how it was with this product,” said Salomon. “It’s very important to have a very strong idea for the product right from the beginning. I worked really closely with the Kaldewei engineers on these designs. I worked with 3D data and between us we were able to share drawings back and forth as the ideas developed further.”
Achieving a clean, simple styling for any product design is far from straightforward, and the purity of the Miena collection’s aesthetic was a tough challenge. Salomon added: “This is the hardest thing to do. To add something more to an initial idea would be very easy because for any product you always have lots of ideas so you could just keep adding those to it.
“Sometimes when I present ideas to a client, I wonder if perhaps they might look at it and think it is too simple and wonder why something has taken four weeks when it looks like it could have been done in an hour. But in fact that is the real art – having a simple idea and not over-complicating it.”
Salomon has a distinguished design pedigree, having spent three years as a designer at Phoenix Design in Stuttgart and five years at Tesseraux + Partner before setting up her own eponymous design studio in 2013. Besides Kaldewei, clients have included Deutsche Telekom, knife manufacturer Wüstof, and iconic kitchen brand Bulthaup.
Although she has extensive experience across a range of different industry sectors, Salomon is passionate about the bathroom, and hopes that the signs of a more varied and adventurous approach to the space will continue to develop further: “I wish the bathroom could become more of a normal room size-wise, and that we could get away from using so many tiles and insisting on staying with so much white. In fact, seeing the new Miena washbasins in different colours gives them a totally different look and feel and I’d like to see more of that in the bathroom.”
Kaldewei | kaldewei.co.ukAnke Salomon | ankesalomon.com