jehs+laub – two creative minds that often attract like magnets, sometimes pulling apart but always coming together again. Their designs are muted and minimal. The road to the end product is all the more dynamic as a result. Things can also get loud.
Focussing on the essentials is the guiding principle of the design duo. That's why they only work on their designs as a twosome. The objective here is to create designs that are free of "creases", as they call them. Anything unnecessary needs to be left out. "We want people to see the idea behind our products within a fraction of a second," says Markus Jehs.
They fight for this idea – including amongst themselves if necessary. Despite this, or because of this, they come up with the best designs during lively exchanges. This momentum is at the heart of jehs+laub. Harmony is created in the final product. Such is the case with the ray cantilever chair by Brunner: With its sleek, flowing shapes that merge seamlessly . The frame and seat seem to fuse together in the transition. "A cantilever chair is one of a few chairs that is seen as a sculpture. Everything flows in one piece. This has always fascinated us," says Jürgen Laub.
Fluid movement cast in steel.
Two designers that produce designs from a single mould. The duo often forget whether a design such as that of the ray is more Jehs or Laub. They very much consider themselves to be a unit. This was not always the case: "Back when we were studying we were rivals, if anything. There was some rivalry between us to see who could come up with the best project. It was like a sport," remembers Jürgen Laub.
jehs+laub have made turning friction into warmth their recipe for success. It parallels the inner workings of their relationship. "Our arguments are loud and passionate, yet we really complement each other. It always comes down to achieving the optimal outcome," says Markus Jehs. "Such a dispute, which can become very heated, always leads to success!" One example being the ray with its exquisite die-cast aluminium frame. The armrests are invisibly mounted on the steel frame and the plastic shell, and the transition from the frame to the seat shell runs just as smoothly and seamlessly. This cantilever chair is the first of its kind.
In response to the question of how the relationship between the designer and manufacturer works, they reply: "It is like the relationship between a mother and father." Both see the designer as the father. Laub adds: "The manufacturer is the mother. She is the one who needs to hatch and develop, and the shared child comes along in the end."
What do they think makes a good design? With deep conviction, Laub replies: "We want to design products that can be manufactured for as long as possible and are not fads."
A lasting relationship, fruitful dynamics and a straightforwardness between them that is reflected in their designs. That is what keeps jehs+laub going.