Hans Gugelot (1920 – 1965) Dutch-Swiss Product Designer

Carousel-S Slide Projector 1963 by Hans Gugelot, Reinhold Häcker
Carousel-S Slide Projector 1963 by Hans Gugelot, Reinhold Häcker

Hans Gugelot (1920 – 1965) began his career in engineering (1940–2) and architecture (1940–6) in Switzerland and was closely associated with the radical Hochschüle für Gestaltung (HfG) in Ulm, Germany, and the clean, systematic, and practical styling of Braun products in the late 1950s and 1960s.

Biography

In Zurich, he served in Bauhaus graduate Max Bill’s office before following him to the HfG in 1954 to head the product design programme. He was a follower of the Ulm design theory, which shunned conventional conceptions of the intuitive, imaginative individual designer favouring a collaborative, multidisciplinary, and empirical approach to design.

Radio-Phonograph (model SK 4/10) 1956 by Dieter Rams, Hans Gugelot
Radio-Phonograph (model SK 4/10) 1956 by Dieter Rams, Hans Gugelot

Consultant to Braun

Gugelot was invited to work with Braun as a consultant, beginning with the design of radios, alongside other Ulm lecturers Otl Aicher and Fritz Eicher. He also collaborated with Braun’s Dieter Rams on the streamlined concept of the SK4 radiogram cabinet (1956) and several other items with Gerd Alfred Müller in the following years, including the Sixtant razor (1962). He also oversaw various real-world projects for his students, including prototypes for the Hamburg UBahn subway system (1959–62).

Bofinger, for whom he designed the modular M125 office system (1957), and Kodak, for whom he designed the Carousel slide projector, were among his other clients (1962).

Sources

Woodham, J. M. (2006). A dictionary of modern design. Oxford University Press.

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