Discover Eindhoven, The Netherlands in this catalogue of creative happenings
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From the mouths of babes From the mouths of babes
November 22nd, 2010

Sadly, despite all the screaming we did on Saturday, no change in the government’s iron decision to cut funds for culture. Maybe they’d change their mind if they saw this speech which nearly made me cry on Saturday. Because Sep, only 9 years old, delivering his first public speech, told us why culture and expression is an absolutely essential factor of our human condition. Watch and weep (quietly while no one is watching).


Take a deep breath, and … Take a deep breath, and …
November 19th, 2010

Scream for culture along with the rest of the Netherlands. Tomorrow, practically every cultural institution in the Netherlands will be rallying together to demonstrate against financial measures being taken by the government in the area of arts and culture. Read more about this in the new weekly column, in English, at overeindhoven.nl – it’s called Eindhoven Culture Files, and it’s written by me. Anyway, see you tomorrow at the 18 Septemberplein, and don’t forget to bring your best screaming voice (plus lots of water!)


Did that chair just sing something? Did that chair just sing something?
November 8th, 2010

As the PR material says “Carved from the finest woods from the South, comes a mind-bending celebration of post-digital design.” The detail I like most about it is the Dutchified interpretation of crooning; a sort of cross between soulful Leonard Cohen but the assertion that Dino Martino is also a musical influence. I’d like to find out who the voice is behind the singing chair, but that’s not the point. It’s not computer programmed, it is a device that performs LIVE, which is another quirk that makes it likeable. Mind you, some people don’t like the singing chair. They might respect the chair, but they don’t like his voice. Just as well it’s a chair, and not a person – we wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings.


There’s something about Myrte There’s something about Myrte
November 2nd, 2010

Myrte de Zeeuw is actually an established fashion designer at a large international company based in the Netherlands, but like everyone, she needs to escape the hectic pace of her professional life: she finds solace in her little bird subjects. The idea to start drawing them came to her while on a business trip in New York (as you do). A Northern Flicker crossed her path. Entranced by this encounter, it triggered her to tell his story. This is the story of Myrte’s sweet love affair with birds.


Emptying a home to fill it with talent Emptying a home to fill it with talent
October 31st, 2010

What I like about the idea of the House of Talent is that many of the designs to be seen during a week like this can be somewhat obtuse, hardly practical – bordering on art. There’s nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, sometimes you feel like you’re walking through a trade show or some sort of “home and interiors fair” which is a little bit uninspiring in terms of “design” in an important sense (mind you, beautiful stuff). What this House of Talent is, is three-fold. It creates a podium for a range of designers and it puts an interesting range of products in context. Then there’s the third bit. You need the talent of curators Nanning and Mischa to put the right pieces together, from the right curtain color to the complementary artwork (not part of the exhibition, but fitting nonetheless).


Converting deadwood into artefacts of wonder Converting deadwood into artefacts of wonder
October 31st, 2010

Dutch Invertuals have taken medieval oak and turned the crumbling former foundations to Eindhoven’s entrance from 600 years ago, into objects that encourage the contemplation of time, a respectful reflection on paper and printing and the notion of allowing an object to assert its own shape, rather than the other way around. Listen to the designers tell their stories in this short film. Fascinating and exciting work taking place in Eindhoven. One of the very best shows here during Dutch Design Week 2010.


Dampeners that will lift your spirits Dampeners that will lift your spirits
October 25th, 2010

Fieldz is a new brand from Den Bosch (as we like to call it locally) – in full it’s ‘s-Hertogenbosch. I spoke to its founder, Marjan Veltkamp, who told me about her happy accident at finding a new way of uplifting and also calming people while keeping noise levels down. Her customers to date have been schools, physiotherapy clinics, offices and private clients. She also says she is astonished at how her idea has found a solid foothold already and threatens to burst completely out of control, and the future of her business is very promising. You can meet Marjan or see her acoustic work at Dutch Design Week in the Machinekamer on Strijp-S, in Eindhoven until 31 October.


Meeting ingenuity at Dutch Design Week Meeting ingenuity at Dutch Design Week
October 24th, 2010

I was running late, as usual, when I made it into the Oiva Toikka art and design exhibition currently on in the Ketelhuis at Strijp-S. I was actually looking for Oiva himself. I couldn’t spot the eighty-year-old professor amongst the hoards, and so – although despondent, I exalted in the beautiful works (even though he has been known to say it’s work bordering on bad taste, I certainly disagree!) on display to celebrate 50 years as a designer with Ittala. But then I saw a fellow journalist, Anniina Koivu (Abitare) with an entourage of Czech, Finnish and Dutch ladies. Oiva was chatting away somewhere in amongst his attentive crowd, so I latched on and this is the result. Enjoy – I certainly did.


STRICTLY CLASSIFIED
October 22nd, 2010

Today I had the immense privilege to sit with a motley band of design, literature, and fashion gurus for 8 hours asserting why they found certain ideas beautiful/functional/inventive/poetic – or not. While there was no blood shed, there were votes re-cast and minds changed … and then some! Come to the glass paned Greenhouse at the Stadhuisplein in Eindhoven and see the entries for yourself starting tomorrow. Entry is €3 and doors open at 11am. You can also vote for the People’s Choice (public award).


The people who design change The people who design change
October 22nd, 2010

This morning’s 1st World Design Forum press breakfast at Eindhoven’s Parktheatre was intimate. I did speak to some of the very relaxed speakers prior to taking the stage. I asked Stefano Marzano what he was going to say. “I didn’t pick the title of my speech. It’s called Next Design. I know what I want […]


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