Hotel Discret is a major retrospective devoted to product and graphic design made in Romania between 1950 and 1990.
Our idea was to create an exhibition that would host, in a homogenous context, urban signs, volumetric letters and specific grocery products packaging designed and produced in Romania, in the 2nd half ofthe 20th century.
Unfortunately, all these objects disappeared gradually and discreetly from the public space. The starting point of our project was undoubtedly constituted by the social transformations and those that have occurred at an urbanistic level, which impacted and still impregnate the throwaway society we live in.
As opposed to Western society, in Romania, the tradition of salvaging and reconditioning and the practice of reintroducing these objects into a more commercial sphere, lacks almost entirely, despite their crucial importance in the history of local graphic design.
On the occasion of the first edition of Romanian Design Week we planned to put under the spotlight an impressive array of products that surprise the public with their design, the ludic approach and last but not least, their minimalism and geometric composition that seem today remarkably contemporary.
I was in awe with how many old product packages they managed to collect for this exhibition. Some of them were familiar, some of them less. Keeping in mind that packaging itself is quintessentially ephemera, these survivors are basically antiques, being more than 30, 40 or even more years old. Impressive! The bad news is that due to my
dumb astonishment I forgot to take photos! Yeah!
Not the case with the urban signs and volumetric letters. The way they were curated helped too. Instagram pitch perfect, thus plenty of pictures! Loved the “Orizont” one and “Mezeluri & Cocaine”. Instantly, I dreamt of a loft to hang some of those signs. But then I got to Art Safari and I dreamt of a manor (and some jack pot) to hang all that art. Neither one materialized
yet, so my lack of focus is harmless, don’t worry.”