The New Nordic wave has been around for a few years now, but to define what New Nordic is, we need to take a closer look at Nordic landscapes, such as deep blue water, wide-open spaces, cold mountains and long, dark winter days. Natural materials like wood, leather, linen and natural woollen textiles have prevailed on the Danish design scene for a long time, and the New Nordic concept has become synonymous with ideas like minimalism, simplicity and functionality.
The Nordic countries (or ‘Norden’ as they are called in the Scandinavian languages) consist of the five Nordic states—Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Finland and Sweden—and parts of the Faroe Islands and Greenland. The terms ‘Scandinavia’ and ‘Norden’ are often used interchangeably to describe specific cultural currents since the Nordic countries have much in common when it comes to history, language and social structures.
Early in 2000, the New Nordic concept became prevalent when it originally appeared in the food culture as New Nordic Food and New Nordic Kitchen Manifesto. Since 2000, the term ‘New Nordic’ has appeared in more contexts in not only the Nordic region but also outside the Nordic countries. Although food and Nordic cuisine have been the most popular contexts for the New Nordic concept, design, clothing, architecture, music and television have also been interpreted based on this new, modern perspective.
Today, the term ‘New Nordic’ has become a label for innovative Nordic architecture and sustainable, minimalistic design products.