Maria Bruun: “Art, furniture and objects play a huge role in each of our microcosmos”

Danish designer Maria Bruun is one of the studios invited to CHART Design. Nordic Design Trace talked to Maria Bruun about her contribution to the fair.

Your studio is one of the studios invited to CHART Design 2019. What can we expect from your presentation?

At this year’s CHART, I will present a range of my furniture and objects that represents my full body of work. I will exhibit both older and brand-new works, a collection of bespoke products that manifests my practice at this given moment. Almost all of my products consist of a series of designs; it reflects very well my process of creation. In my terminology, each idea is flexible in scale, variation and function. For example my Bigfoot Table collection that aims to accommodate the user’s need, and fit in varying scales whereever it’s needed. Expect a new take on traditional furniture-craft and materials, where every line, detail and soft wooden surface is carried out in very high quality.

Danish designer Maria Bruun. Photo: Pernille Andersen

Is there a specific topic that interests you in your practice right now?

Creatively I am circling around the term microcosmos. The word microcosm comes from the Greek word mikròs cosmos and means ‘small world’. Man aligns and creates small worlds and scenes where everyday life is lived. We identify with our space and when we sense our surroundings, the shapes, colors and materials, we define who we are to ourselves and our surroundings. Art, furniture and objects play a huge role in each of our microcosmos!

I am also very interested in communicating new Danish design to an international audience. I believe that we have an important agenda that points to a bright future for Danish design. We work in a global aesthetic but are still deeply rooted in a local understanding of form and material – it points to an exciting future for Danish design internationally.

Bigfoot Dining Table by Maria Bruun. Photo: Pernille Andersen

Do you work mainly with collectible design or do you also design for clients and industry?

Both. Many of my designs start out as a limited edition or a series of collectible design. For example my series of angled mirrors was first introduced in 2012. The idea behind the collection was to create an object that balanced that special nerve between a functional object and an artistic installation object. Mirror Mirror is a design that questions human reflection, or lack thereof. The angled mirror reflects a small simplistic section of reality. Imagine a mirror that reflects more than one side of the story. A series of angled mirror objects that parasites in corners, edges and surfaces, reflecting several sides of both the space and the voyeur. The mirrors are simple and precise in their design and the steam-bend solid oak frame is the key characteristic of the design and tells a story about wood-crafts. Today these Mirrors are manufactured and sold by Danish furniture brand Paustian.

Mirror Mirror – angled mirror series by Maria Bruun for Paustian. Photo: Pernille Andersen

Where do you find your inspiration when you design?

Often my inspiration spans from exploring a certain material, form or function to examining how a particular theme can be expressed and disseminated in a formal or spatial context. Through the exploration of materials I try to cultivate their aesthetic and poetic abilities. The craftsmanship is therefore an important and inspiring role in my practice as a designer.

Dependables – a new series of stackable boxes by Maria Bruun.

A lot of collectors visit CHART. Will they be able to buy the pieces you exhibit?

Yes, it is possible to purchase the collection whether you are a professional or private client. All pieces can be produced on request to fit your unique space.


Name: Maria Bruun
Born: 1984
Education: Designer, MA 2012, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Design.
Website: &
Instagram: @bruundesign & @mbadvstudio

Maria Bruun was recently appointed by the Danish Arts Foundation to be a part of the honorable Young Artistic Elite.

As an add-on to the gallery presentations at CHART Design, the fair will this year present a small group of hand-picked design studios from the Nordic countries. Each studio will showcase a selection of their work – ranging from raw experiments to exquisitely crafted objects.