Verena Hennig:50 Years of Mum
To mark a special occasion, her mother’s 50th birthday, Verena Hennig designed this invitation card made of porcelain – an elegant, traditional and timeless material. The elements, including an illustration of her mother’s life to date, were die-cut into the porcelain foil and then baked in a conventional ceramic furnace in an edition of 50 pieces.
“‘Honour thy father and thy mother,’ says the Fourth Commandment. But it is not all sunshine and roses between parents and their children – there is sometimes mighty tension between the generations. With the invitation ‘50 Years of Mum’, Verena Hennig has solved the conundrum intelligently and ironically: respectfully paying homage in a form that can be smashed.” Stephan Ott
1. Why did you choose porcelain as a material?
In order to consolidate the personal nature of the invitation, I was looking for a material that was essentially sensitive and tactile, and traditional yet contemporary. Porcelain is all of those things, as well as being a high quality material. Placing these properties within a largely unfamiliar context finally convinced me that my choice was the right one.
2. How do the material, typography and illustration interact within your concept?
Initially, the invitation card consisted only of illustration and typography, printed on paper. But something was missing on a subtle, personal level, and the performance of the product did not present any challenges. Introducing the porcelain element gave the project a kind of coherence.
3. To what extent are you creatively limited by the particular characteristics of the material? Or do these open up new possibilities?
As a material, porcelain has a striking effect, grabbing the attention and giving its use a particular impact due to its specific properties, while adding a philosophical dimension, in the broadest sense of the term, to the concept, and thus overcoming the limitations and one-dimensional nature of other materials.