For this year’s NYCxDESIGN week, we transformed our Brooklyn studio into an immersive exhibition that took a look back into our historic 50-year legacy, and towards the future to see what the next 50 years may hold. The interactive installations included an AR wall activated by our frog50 app, Magic Mirrors powered by computer vision to create moments of play, a product and photography gallery showing off iconic pieces from our 50-year history and much more.
Core77 calls the frog50 exhibition “delightfully nerdy,” and the Drum touts it as “an impressive array of designs that changed industries.” The traveling exhibition has already made appearances in our studios in Milan, Munich and Austin, and will continue on to San Francisco, Madrid, London and Paris throughout the year.
We were honored to have our founder, Hartmut Esslinger, and his wife, business partner and first frog President, Patricia Roller, in New York for the celebrations. In addition to partaking in a fireside chat led by Turi McKinley, Executive Director, frog, Esslinger and Roller also joined the frogNY team for the day to chat about frog, see the work going on in the studio, and take a moment to sign our historic frog wall.
During the fireside chat, Esslinger and Roller spoke about how they managed to turn one man’s vision of what design could be into a global design business that’s been running 50-years strong. Esslinger spoke of his unwavering determination to be head of design at WEGA, one of Germany’s top electronics companies at the time (even though he was still only a student!) and how he was eventually able to grow his small practice from the Black Forest region of Germany into a global force in design, working with visionaries like Steve Jobs. When speaking to what’s in store for design over the next 50 years, Roller discussed how important it is to stay in tune with what’s going on outside of design. No one can ever predict the future, she posited, so it’s important to keep discovering the world around you in order to push it forward. “Stay curious!” she urged the audience, “and that’s probably the best way to predict the future.”