Julia Kaiser a Hamburg based designer recently joined our team. We met her to chat about her design ‘glosh” – a reinterpretation of a pre industrial cooling technique.
1) Julia, we discovered your product Glosh during our research on alternative solutions for the cooling of food. What’s the idea behind your design? And which physical principle is it based on?
Glosh is a storage container for groceries like fruits, vegetables and cheese. It is a new interpretation of the traditional storage spaces for root vegetables in moist sand.
The food is kept fresh using evaporative cooling. This technique was also used by preindustrial self-sustaining cultures. Nowadays food is kept cool in fridges utilizing big amounts of electricity. Also, vegetables for example run dry and loose their aroma/flavor due to the low temperatures. Therefore, I was persuaded of this natural storage tecnique, but not by the method. Therefore, I had to find a material and a design that keeps up with the evaporative cooling tecnique.
2) How important is the material you used for your design?
What I did was not designing a new object, but newly interpreting a preindustrial tecnique.
This way, new combinations of form and function were invented. I was inspired by the metal cover (=cloche) that is used in french cuisine to serve food. There it is used to keep the dish warm. I have used this inspiration and changed the insulating cloche into a cooling Glosch. I needed to find a material that can do both: keeping water and evaporating it.
3) Why is the topic alternative cooling of interest for you? What fascinates you about this issue/topic?
I am fascinated by the forgotten techniques of preindustrial cultures and how they can be relevant nowadays. I give you one example: for fourthousand years mankind learned how to cultivate the land and grow food. Within only two generations we have forgotten (almost) everything and handed over this task to the industry. Urban gardening movements are re-skilling people, like for example the organisation Transistion Town Totnes. The aim of the south English village Totnes is to (re-)gain independence from the mineral oil industry.
4) Glosch was your final project at the Academy of Fine Arts Hamburg (HFBK). What happened in the meantime? Can we already buy your product? Is it planned to go into serial production?
Yes, my goal is to bring Glosch to production maturity. First producers approached me after the presentation of Glosch during the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven. The next step is a coorporation with a thermodynamic institute. This way last production specific and product requirements will be defined.
5) What is your perspective on the vegan diet as a designer?
I think it’s interesting how the vegan diet brings up new forms of self-supplying. The food industry hardly provides products for vegans, respectively there is no market for it. There are other processing steps and requirements for storing groceries in private kitchens. These processes and requirements demand a re-design of the conventional kitchen.
For more informatio about Julia Kaiser check out her website: julia-kaiser.de/