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Dutch Design Awards 2018

All week in Veem | Floor 3 by Dutch Design Foundation
A different price applies for this event (This event is only accessible with a DDW ticket.).

During Dutch Design Week, the work of all 24 winners can be seen in the nine-day long exhibition. Besides telling the stories behind the designs, it places them in a broader context.

Here you can also vote for the Public Award 2018.

Dutch Design Awards Exhibition

The 24 winners of the Dutch Design Awards 2018, bringing about change is the most important motivator. None of the designers bow to the pressure of prevailing conventions, structures, systems or patterns (of thinking). Designers draw upon traditional design traits such as playfulness, or inventive narrative concepts as easily as their socially-engaged and disruptive view of the world according to the jury. This 16th edition of Dutch Design Awards presents several prizes per category.


Johannes Offerhaus graduated cum laude from ArtEZ Fashion Design in Arnhem in 2016; that year he won the Frans Molenaar Couture Award for his graduation collection. In 2017 he presented 'An Experiment with Parabolas' at Studio 8 in Amsterdam. The collection is inspired by the parabola as a mathematical equation and consists of five outfits plus five art installations. The installations are set in motion by the models, and as such they are complementary to the clothing. Offerhaus regards his work as a large research project into form and movement, in which wearable clothing does not have to be the (only) end product.


For many people, the smartphone’s alarm function is an important reason for having the phone next to their pillow. Circa offers a better alternative. This smart alarm clock functions completely independently and supports a good night's sleep. White noise, breathing exercises and sensors to measure sleep cycles help you wake up fitter and more rested. If you’d prefer no white noise, why not listen to digital radio or Spotify on the Circa. And, as an added benefit, this alarm clock is much more visually appealing than average consumer technology: the designers used textile and large buttons to create a tactile, friendly product.


After several small-scale presentations in Paris and Amsterdam last autumn, Philipp Schueller and Rens de Waal went a step further. This time, again with the sense of irony that typifies the label, Schueller de Waal flirted with all the clichés that surround the immense shows of luxury fashion houses. They embraced the limitations they experience as a young, independent label. This was manifested in a variety of improvised solutions that attempted to satisfy the (unrealistic) expectations of the current system. 'Serious fashion ... not so serious' is their rallying cry: a critical reflection on the fashion climate in which fashion and luxury have become synonymous.


Cow&Co is a concept introduced by a herd of cows that want to start their own business. The cows turn themselves into self-sufficient milk production machines. Methane gas collected from their stomach is used to fuel a milking robot. The animals roam independently in the green spaces of a city and use an online service to connect with their customers. This service allows people to select a cow and collect fresh milk from it. The animals are equipped with a welfare sensor so they can monitor quality, and can also use the data for technical, veterinary and nutrition maintenance. Cow&Co questions the production-consumption relationship between people and cows and proposes an alternative business model.


Aleksandra Gaca created a new version of her BLOKO fabric: a sound-absorbent textile with a woven 3D structure, from a larger collection of Architextiles. The design aims to make the cabin of Renault's autonomous, electric SYMBIOZ concept car as comfortable as any modern home interior. In the TextielLAB (Textielmuseum, Tilburg), Gaca – a pioneer in 3D woven textiles and an expert in their production and use – developed a textile translation of the vision of the French car manufacturer. Blending high-quality, organic cotton yarns with wool and polyester yarns, the fabric combines strength and softness. Thanks to these qualities, this new Bloko design is suitable for both the SYMBIOZ concept car and the Renault home, uniting the two spaces in an ecosystem.


On the last evening of the 27th FashionWeek Amsterdam, MAISON the FAUX presented an extraordinary show. The fictional fashion house created an eclectic and diverse collection by combining, mixing and blending strict rules and patterns. The looks may have been in soft pastels, but the show itself was fierce. MAISON the FAUX is an initiative of Joris Suk and Tessa de Boer: a creative studio that presents itself as a grand couture fashion house. They refer to their fashion house as ‘an affectionate reaction to the current fashion system and a big faux wink in the direction of an audience liberated enough to move freely through an often narrow-minded (fashion) world’. For New York Fashion Week, the concept and collection were taken even further in FAUXMOSAPIEN the evolution.


At the 2015 edition of FashionWeek Amsterdam, Lisa Konno presented her debut collection ‘For the Workers’: an ‘anti-sweatshop statement’, to raise awareness of the conditions in the fast fashion industry. A year later she travelled to Rwanda with the clothing brand Afriek to create a women’s clothing collection with the help of local garment-makers. The inspiration for her latest collection and the star of the show is her Japanese father, Nobuaki Konno, who emigrated to the Netherlands in 1977. This project is her artistic response to, and ironic comment on, the integration debate: a visual celebration of cultural misunderstandings and tourist clichés, in which father Nobu plays the main role as muse and source of inspiration.


Hansje van Halem, the new head designer for Lowlands festival since 2017, bases her designs on a horizontal and vertical grid of lines in which letters, shapes and patterns – static or animated – materialise. With the addition of an unconventional colour palette, the toolkit for the festival’s 2018 edition is complete. Lowlands calls the style ‘optical illusion that’s perfect for festivals and music’. Van Halem wanted to make something bold and dynamic, standalone, distinctive and refreshing. A design that avoids festival clichés, presents plenty of design challenges, and is sufficiently flexible to generate striking visuals under intense time pressure and even during the festival, without having to deliver a simplified design.


MacGuffin Magazine takes a highly unusual approach to researching the use and the (historical) experience of design and crafts. 'MacGuffin' is a term introduced by the film director Alfred Hitchcock for objects that trigger a story; MacGuffin Magazine tells unusual stories about ordinary things. The context and use of everyday objects such as the cabinet, the rope or the sink are explored from different disciplines and perspectives – from literature to design criticism and from visual essay to graphic novel.


Manon van Hoeckel designs encounters. As a social designer, Van Hoeckel develops tools that encourage strangers to chat to each other. She did precisely the same in her ‘wassalon’, or launderette, which was part of the ‘Change the System’ exhibition in Boijmans Van Beuningen. The laundry was disruptive, questioned the role of the museum and brought together different target groups. In ‘Limbo Embassy’ – a travelling embassy for refugees, asylum seekers and undocumented migrants – Van Hoeckel gives refugees the role of ambassadors, thus showing the refugee issue in an entirely new light. With her 'Making Money' project, she investigates how undocumented refugees can or should contribute to society.


Slim Fit is a tiny house with grand designs. The micro-home, measuring a mere fifty square meters distributed over three floors, is designed for urban densification. Slim Fit’s modest footprint means it occupies less space than two parking bays, making it ideal for use in inner-city contexts, as well as densification in more spacious (post-war) neighbourhoods. Ana Rocha Architecture’s compact design can be built as a freestanding, or connected, dwelling. The concept is designed for the growing group of working singles who want to live compactly, comfortably, sustainably, characterfully and, above all, centrally in urban contexts


Why do Dutch people often ignore the churches in their own country, yet visit every historic place of worship while on holiday? This was the question that prompted the idea of making Dutch churches more inviting to day-trippers; not necessarily regular churchgoers, but people interested in the rich history and story behind the church. Last year, Museum Catharijneconvent and design agency Fabrique teamed up to develop the concept, website and new graphic identity for ‘The Greatest Museum in the Netherlands’. An audio tour and additional information shares stories about the hidden church treasures of thirteen remarkable churches and synagogues. Dutch churches contain a unique collection and now, together, form the largest museum in the Netherlands – also literally, in square metres, art treasures and visitors.


The world’s first steel bridge, 3D printed by robots, will soon span a canal in the centre of Amsterdam. This fascinating, ground-breaking project is an initiative of the Dutch start-up MX3D. The unique design is the brainchild of designer Joris Laarman. The development came about with partners including Arup, Autodesk, Heijmans, ArcelorMittal and Imperial College London. The bridge will be placed over the canal of the Oudezijds Achterburgwal (Wallen). The project marks a breakthrough for the innovative possibilities of (large-scale) 3D printing: the introduction of this technique to a public use object increases the social awareness and integration of this technology. The project symbolises the speed with which this new technology and possible applications are developing.


Olivier van Herpt works on the interface of traditional crafts and contemporary industrial design, and focuses on what separates these two domains: the machine. Van Herpt graduated with an unusual collection of ceramic bowls, bowls and vases, made with an advanced 3D printer that he had developed himself over a two-year period. He is presently working on a new 3D printer which will enable him to create organic forms, although he will probably explore other techniques and materials too, with equal dedication. He also seeks to democratise the production process and to reduce the distance between designer and user by making his self-developed technologies available to everyone.


Paperstorm.it is a clever digital campaign that simulates the physical properties of paper and the way leaflets scatter in the wind. The purpose of the campaign was to highlight the importance of the American net neutrality law after it came under pressure from the FCC (Federal Communication Commission). The campaign idea dates from the era of airborne leaflet propaganda: airplanes dropped millions of leaflets to spread a (political) message. The virtual Paperstorm.it presented Moniker with an unusual challenge: the creation of a scalable and navigable 3D environment. For which the designers used the latest technology. Paperstorm.it has had an unprecedented impact: in just 3 weeks, visitors distributed over 22 million flyers.


The icon of the first World Design Event (WDE), the People's Pavilion, a design by Overtreders W and bureau SLA, was presented during Dutch Design Week 2017 in the middle of Strijp-S. The designers built the pavilion using loaned and repurposed materials, resulting in a colourful façade of recycled plastic and a wooden skeleton of borrowed components: a building with an ecological footprint of almost zero. After all, raw materials were not irretrievably lost during construction; all materials used were returned undamaged to the owners afterwards.


Every hand-painted Royal Delft vase is an unmistakable, one of a kind, traditional piece of Delft Blue. Even when the specific decoration is translated into other objects, real or virtual, the distinctive ‘blueware’ identity is undeniably in evidence. This project is a clever fusion of centuries-old craftsmanship and advanced digital augmented reality technology. Augmented Blueware is the product of close collaboration. Royal Delft wanted to launch a range of extraordinary tableware on the consumer market. To create a concept that would stand out in an already overcrowded marketplace, FLEX / design came up with a smart concept: an exclusive range of Blueware in which each individual dinner service is based on a unique, hand-painted Delft Blue vase. This innovative project was made possible thanks to the technical expertise of TWNKLS / Augmented Reality, a leader in the field of computer vision.


Social Label describes itself as a laboratory that uses the power of design and communication to create new approaches to labour, learning and participating. In this sense, they are not principals as much as catalysts of designs that help people in the workshop to get ahead. Founders Petra Janssen (Studio Boot) and Simone Kramer (C-mone) design work activities that are tailored to the abilities and needs of workshop members, and create meaningful design so that people on the fringes of society can get involved in the labour market, and take pride in the attractive products they make. Social Label is always on the lookout for designers who can design products aimed at benefiting the workshop participants. Twelve leading designers are currently working with Social Label, including Piet Hein Eek, Kiki Van Eijk, Dick Van Hoff, Edwin Vollebergh, Borre Akkersdijk and Roderick Vos.


It’s unusual: paying a fixed monthly fee to use a bicycle without actually buying it. But the founders of Swapfiets think that, thanks to Netflix, people are ready to join a bicycle subscription scheme: you pay for being mobile. From as little as 12 euros a month, you can even call a mechanic when the bike tyres need pumping. You can choose from a variety of frame colours, but the bikes always come with a blue front tyre. If you pay extra, you can even swap your frame for a different colour – and ask the swap crew to do it. Swapfiets promises to repair or exchange every bike within twelve hours. It’s an innovative idea that perfectly responds to the growing demand for service concepts.


In the future, the algorithms of the smart city will decide the allocation of public resources. If many electric cars have to be charged, a smart charging algorithm will determine when your vehicle can be charged. And this can make charging your car take longer than planned. How can you be sure that decisions as to who gets priority are taken honestly? ElaadNL and Alliander commissioned The Incredible Machine to design the Transparent Charging Station to show how the energy available is distributed, and on the basis of which factors. This design gives smart cities a way to share their transparency with citizens. With the prototype, the developers demonstrate the added value of transparency for the user


UrgentCity is a research project and an activity programme. Online platform Amateur Cities investigates alternative and new ways of city-making and seeks to intensify the connections and exchange of knowledge between different disciplines. New Generations brings together young architects in a European network. Together they work on ways to reframe the discourse to find better ways of meeting technical and social challenges in urban developments. UrgentCity has formulated four themes: New Ecologies, Urban Assets, Digital Toolkit and New Collectives. In partnership with experts from various disciplines, they researched and defined these themes to arrive at a common vocabulary. The results were discussed in a conference and workshops; Amateur Cities presents the entire process at urgentcity.eu.


VIIA is a joint venture between Royal HaskoningDHV and VolkerWessels company Visser & Smit Bouw and was established to secure public buildings in the earthquake area of Groningen by inspecting, analysing and taking the required reinforcement measures. Until recently, this was carried out manually; a labour-intensive process involving a great deal of expert knowledge, which is repeated for each at-risk building. On behalf of Centrum Veilig Wonen, Freshheads and VIIA developed a digital tool: experts enter measurement data into the programme, which then translates it into a 3D model. Engineers use the model to arrive at a seismic analysis, and identify which parts of the building need reinforcing, and to what extent. Twenty organisations are now working with the new tool.


The project 'What now, Koetsier?' consists of a series of autonomous artworks that were presented each week as an advertisement in Het Parool. For the series, more than forty designers were invited to create a work for the space available, experimenting with image and language. The project is an initiative of designers Celina Yavelow and Freja Kir (Chives Archives) in collaboration with René Put (PutGootink) and pays tribute to the work of conceptual artist Hans Koetsier. The series of 45 small digital and analogue ‘advertisements’ is inspired by the work and ideas of the artist himself, who presented a similar series of advertisements in the 1970s and 1980s. The works are bundled and published in large format as a daily newspaper and archived online at watnukoetsier.nl.


The Zaligebrug, designed by NEXT architects, is primarily a functional answer to the questions and demands that arose from the redevelopment of the river landscape as a result of climate change. The 200-meter-long bridge at Lent (Nijmegen) connects the new island of Veur-Lent with the northern bank of the Waal and stretches over the lateral gulley that was created to give the river space at high tide. With its playful design, the bridge allows people to see and experience fluctuating water levels in relation to the bridge and the immediate surroundings. The gently curving bridge blends with the path structure running through the river park.

Dutch Design Awards saw the light of day in 2003 thanks to BNO and DesignLink. Since 2005 DDA has had its office in design capital Eindhoven. The competition itself, the Awards Night and the retrospective exhibition make Dutch Design Awards a unique platform. DDA presents and rewards the best in the field of Dutch design and creates professional, public and media attention for the winners.

Dutch Design Awards 2018 announces the 16th edition of the most prestigious design prizes in the country.


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