Discover Eindhoven, The Netherlands in this catalogue of creative happenings
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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).


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.


Finding strength in hidden places Finding strength in hidden places
September 17th, 2010

When I was a little girl, playing dress ups and choosing to be a “gypsy” meant wearing a head scarf, big loop-y earrings and piles of other costume jewellery; maybe there’d be an eye patch too, but there would definitely be a bright, full skirt and flowing blouse with a peasant neck. Finally, a crystal ball could complete ‘the look’. Generally, being a “gypsy” meant you had licence to be creative, colourful, wise and mysterious. But we grow up and see how things really are. What does it mean to be a Roma today? How do they cope with their situation? The upcoming book and exhibition by Mike Roelofs and Fanny Jol let us see into where resilience resides.


Two places, same time Two places, same time
September 8th, 2010

It’s amazing what you can do these days, short of cloning yourself. You can be in two places at the same time. Okay, perhaps not physically, but your work can be. That’s what Lucas Maassen is doing, starting on Friday. He’ll be both launching a book and showing his work simultaneously in New York and Eindhoven. I think that’s impressive. I am not yet 100% sure which city he’ll be in, in person. Only time will tell. Perhaps you can turn up to one of the venues and let me know which one he’ll be at – you see I have to be somewhere else that evening, and you can’t be in two places at the same time. Well, I can’t.


Unforgettable – Julie Verhoeven Unforgettable – Julie Verhoeven
November 19th, 2009

In the opening words, the work of multi-disciplinary artist Julie Verhoeven’s was described several times by Francesca Gavin, to be “break-away”. Special hand painted editions of Verhoeven’s book, Bit of Rough, containing Francesca’s foreward were available for purchase. Fair enough. I was stimulated about being able to explore the space, to be wowed and to be pushed to see fashion and art in a way I’d never imagined.