Having only one day to spend at the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven is not nearly enough to see all that is potentially interesting. Out of all that was on offer, VEEM seemed like possibly the most varied and interesting thing to see, and it surely did not disappoint!
VEEM was an international mix of designers and creative makers, both established and just starting out, presented on two floors of what is normally used as a multilevel car park. The industrial surroundings matched nicely with the exhibits, and gave it all an atmosphere of things being truly built up and made there, and new things emerging.
Sustainability and new materials were very strong themes among the exhibitors, with some nods to traditional techniques also here and there. It was not an easy job to pick out the most interesting exhibits, as everything seemed to have some intriguing angle or approach. Let’s check out the most interesting finds!
UMPRUM / ACADEMY OF ARTS, ARCHITECTURE & DESIGN IN PRAGUE: CZECH CRAFT IS HERE!
Traditional craft techniques meet new materials and design ideas in the works of Czech students.
NEWTAB-22: SEA STONE
Studio Newtab-22 from Korea looks for “overlooked materials” to use in new, sustainable and aesthetic ways. Project Sea Stone seeks to utilise the 7 million tonnes of seashells discarded by the food industry every year to produce a new material that can be used like limestone.
PIERRE AZALBERT, BENTON CHING, KARLIJN SIBBEL: RE-FLEX
Re-Flex is a new material you can mould and re-mould yourself, using a moderate amount of heat. The inventors wanted to help extend the lifespan of objects by making it possible for the user to form them into something different once they were no longer needed in their original form.
TextileLab Amsterdam combines digital fabrication processes, craft techniques, textile knowledge and material research into relevant opportunities for the textile, fashion and material fields. This is done according to the principles of Waag, using both technological and creative innovation side by side to achieve more sustainable, circular and ecological solutions. Their Material Archive is an open source archive of DIY sustainable materials.
MIRA NAMETH: BIOPHILICA – LOCAL PLANTBASED MATERIALS
Working with urban plant waste, Mira Nameth has spent a year developing both flexible and rigid materials that are sourced, created, recycled and composted locally. These new, biodegradable and recyclable materials have already been on show in several places, including Milan Design Week.
Chemarts brings to design the idea that in a circular, closed loop system materials are merely stored in products, and can be used again and again.
WHHW COLLECTIVE: WORKING HARD OR HARDLY WORKING
WHHW explore the ideas, theories, social impacts, creative output, and processes surrounding labour. What kind of work makes something more valuable? What is the value of creative work? When have we worked enough for something? WHHW wants to challenge our work-related values.
VLISCO & CO: THE YOUTH OF AFRICA
Vlisco & Co is a platform for young Africans to express modern culture, and to connect them for debate, to define and to demonstrate. “Nowhere in the world will the young generation resonate as they will in Africa.”
EUNJI JUN: FROM PEELS TO CASEIN
Eunji Jun experiments with the use of different biodegradable materials. Combining food waste and casein brings out new colours and textures into a material that is fully biodegradable and recyclable.
THE SWEDISH SCHOOL OF TEXTILES, UNIVERSITY OF BORÅS
TXTL showcases bachelor and master students’ work and explorations of different weaving techniques to achieve new functionalities. like the self-supporting 3d weave and the two-sided, pleated knit.