Meet in My Kitchen #14
Entrepreneur, designer, master ceramist. In the new podcast, Stefanie Hering explains the change in food culture and why experimentation and innovation can only work together. (German episode)
Hering Berlin * Pott Cooperation
Berlin. Mettmann | November 2020
Since 1995, Stefanie Hering, porcelain designer and founder of the Hering Berlin manufactory, and Wilhelm Seibel, owner and managing director of the legendary cutlery manufactory Pott, have known and appreciated each other. Now the idea of cooperation has become reality. Starting in September, four exquisite bundles on the themes of salt, cheese and oysters will be available, combining the unique aesthetics of both brands.
This aesthetic not only includes the innovative and timelessly purist design of the objects, but also a very similar philosophy and manufacturing processes based on traditional craft processes:
Stefanie Hering, who trained as a master ceramist before concentrating on porcelain in the 1990s, experiments with forms and glazes, constantly explores the limits of the material in collaboration with artisans who have been skilled in porcelain production for decades, and presents designs that can only be produced by hand.
Read more about Stefanie Hering
The unique quality of Pott‘s cutlery is also based on the purest craftsmanship, the precision of which is in no way inferior to Swiss watch movements or the cut of diamonds and cannot be replaced by any computer-controlled machine.
More than 30 operations are involved in each spoon and fork; a knife takes more than 90 steps to give the blades their lasting sharpness and the entire workpiece its uniquely balanced weight.
The cutlery manufacture dates back to 1904; the international reputation of the brand is based on the son of the company founder and ingenious cutlery designer Carl Pott, who joined his father‘s business in Solingen in 1932. In 2006, the company passes into the ownership of the Seibel family, who have been producing the highest quality cutlery in their factory in neighboring Mettmann for 125 years, now in the 6th generation.
„Pott and Hering Berlin differentiates between material and category,“ says Wilhelm Seibel. „But so much unites us: quality, manufacture, Made in Germany, the table community. At a set table we are simply a great and very sociable team.“
All these similarities are also noticeable in each of the four bundles offered at the beginning of the cooperation:
The salt bowl of the „Pulse“ collection, whose fine ribbed structure is created by a washing process that can only be carried out by hand, is complemented by a salt spoon in the design of the iconic „Pott 84“ series, the „Chancellor‘s cutlery“ of Ludwig Erhard‘s era.
Shop 01 Salt
The „Cheese“ bundle combines another classic: the „Formado“ soft cheese knife created by designer Ralph Krämer in 1994 with one of those plateaus of biscuit porcelain that Stefanie Hering developed based on baroque „Conversational Pieces“ from the form archive of the Schwarzburger Werkstätten in Thuringia. „They pick up the original idea of table decoration“, explains Stefanie Hering, „aesthetically stimulating porcelain objects, about which table guests unknown to each other can enter into conversation and spend a wonderful, inspired time together. It is exactly this joy of conviviality that we would like to pass on to our customers!“
Shop 02 Cheese
The Big Oyster Bundle combines an oyster glove and an oyster crusher, also designed by Ralph Krämer, with an oyster bar in the purist „Velvet“ design by Hering Berlin, which focuses on the interaction of hand-cut, matt biscuit porcelain and mirrored glazed porcelain surfaces.
04 Oyster small
Finally, the „Small Oysters“ bundle combines the pot oyster fork with a curved notch, so that the oyster flesh can be completely detached from the shell, with a Hering Berlin plate in a „Silent Blue“ design with sea-blue, hand-poured cobalt glaze.
When and how did the idea of a collaboration arise?
Wilhelm Seibel: Our manufactories have been known and friends for a long time. I think I have known Stefanie Hering since 1995. What inspires me about Stefanie Hering is her enduring passion for porcelain and experimental craftsmanship. She inspires me again and again and has certainly played a part in the successful developments of Pott. We have always been aware that porcelain from Hering Berlin is the perfect complement for Pott products. For a long time we have been recommending Hering when customers ask us for the “right” porcelain. I think 2020 is finally the time for collaboration!
Why is Pott or Hering Berlin your preferred partner for this cross-sector collaboration?
Stefanie Hering: Personally, the value and mastery of pure handwork is really very close to my heart. Objects made purely by hand with a lot of love and knowledge also lead to a more conscious and sustainable consumption: I buy something that I do not put aside after three months, but rather something that I like to look at and use for years. This is exactly what the collaboration with Pott is all about. I call this mindful luxury, a new mindfulness in design, a very conscious use of resources, people and objects. I share this claim with Pott.
Wilhelm Seibel: Some proverbs would fit here: “”Great minds think alike”. Pott und Hering distinguishes between material and category, but so much unites us: quality, manufacture, Made in Germany, table fellowship. At a set table we are simply a great and very sociable team.
Your favorite piece/bundle from the Hering Berlin * Pott cooperation?
Wilhelm Seibel: The choice is certainly not easy. But I decide for the salt bowl and the gilded salt spoon. I find the filigree of the spoon, the velvetiness of the biscuit porcelain and the somewhat extravagant touch of the gilding a very charming combination. On a warm summer evening with friends, I see myself garnishing a salad with goat cheese and walnuts with Fleur des Sel. Maybe we’ll have oysters for the main course and some cheese for dessert, so that the other bundles can be used as well.
Stefanie Hering: Of all the exciting product combinations in this cooperation, the Hering Berlin Velvet cheese plateau with Pott Formado is unique to me. For the plateau I have selected a historical original from the repertoire of the Schwarzburg workshops and re-stylized it in biscuit porcelain. In the history of European manufactories, the original plateaus have been used for the presentation of food at court and were regarded - as bearers of groups of figures - as Conversational Pieces. They take up the original idea of table decoration: aesthetically fine, stimulating porcelain objects, through which unknown table guests can enter into conversation with each other and spend a wonderful, inspired time together. This is exactly the goal of our collaboration and it is exactly this joy of conviviality that we would like to pass on to our customers with all the wonderful manufactory objects from Pott und Hering Berlin!