Yes No

Dutch design at PASSAGEN, Interior Design Week Cologne

The first event on the design show calendar, PASSAGEN, 13 to 19 January 2014 includes a good selection of Dutch designers this year.

By Katie Dominy / 17-01-2014

To make it simple, let’s start with ‘DUTCH DESIGN 2014’, an exhibition of 16 designers and studios organised by Dutch Design Desk. Located centrally close to the river, the space was being manned at the time of our visit by Mieke Meijer who was exhibiting her Frameworks shelving system, Winding Tower desk and Balance light.

The other designers showing are Alexander Pelikan, Chris Slutter, Dave Keune, DUM, Fabian Von Spreckelsen, Geke Lensink, Kaspar Hamacher, Kranen/Gille, Kees Marcelis, Jeroen Wand, Jacco Bregonje, Jesse Visser, Maurer United, Maurice Mentjens and Roel Huisman. 

Wohnbar Wunderbar is the name of the fourth edition of Gronicles, an exhibition of work by designers based in the city of Groningen that takes place at PASSAGEN ever other year. Located in the Design Quarter Ehrenfeld, Jack Brandsma, Lambert Kamps and Lotte Douwes, plus guest designers Esther Jongsma, Lisa Sportel and Arend Groosman are displaying their work in a old industrial building with plenty of character. On show is a mix of experimental work and newly developed products which are available at a Gronicles shop. 

Jack Brandsma gave us a tour and showed us his work included lighting designs Major Tom chandelier, AchtungAchtung! and Major tube, plus his coat-hanger with a magnet set into the top that allows it to be hung from anything metal, as well as the Mobile Housekeeping Project, while Lambert Kamps is presenting Cozy Shelter, Fat Furniture, Inflatable Furniture and Waffle Bakery. Design Academy Eindhoven (DAE) graduate from 2013 Esther Jongsma is showing Passage Carpet, Passage Room Divider and Heat Capacity, and Lotte Douwes Lamp&Socket, Spatial Vases,Table Talks tableware and Soft Sockets.

Also in the Design Quarter Ehrenfeld, Amsterdam-based Siba Sahabi, alumnus of the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, is at the Salon Zwei beauty salon with her lighting series Sherazade, inspired by the nocturnal shadowy silhouettes outlined on Middle Eastern rooftops. Three styles of lamp are created from coiled strips of felt, coated either side in metallic paint. The differing colours of felt and paint create a shimmering effect. 

Over at the imm Cologne trade show, the D3 Talents Contest of 22 finalists included Utrecht School of the Arts 2013 graduate Emiel Remmelts with his final project Stacked Objects that was shown at Dutch Design Week. Influenced by the Russian architect and designer El Lissitzky's strong Constructivist style, the shelves make use of differing components such as bricks, a glass vase and concrete blocks to create a 'collage' effect in contrasting textures. 

Now based in Rotterdam, DAE graduate Arnout Meijer. brought to the show his dramatic Thanks for the Sun Series lighting that allows users to adapt the temperature and character of the light in their rooms. We were intrigued when we saw it at the academy for Dutch Design Week and heartening to see that it’s now out of prototype and for sale. Also among the finalists we came across the Face Value series of low tables by Rachel Griffin, also seen at DDW. Made from three interlocking faces, each face is produced in a different material, so that a wide range of designs across colour, texture and cost can be produced. Fellow DAE alumni Wonmin Park was nominated for his Haze series of chair and table that use solid geometric blocks of resin coloured in pastel tones to give a contrasting hazy effect. 

PASSAGEN and imm Cologne run until this Sunday January 19 2014.


1 and 2 - Jack Brandsma

3 -  Lotte Douwes

4 -  Frameworks, Mieke Meijer

5 -  Sherazade, Siba Sahabi

6 -  Haze, Wonmin Park

7-  Stacked Objects, Emiel Remmelts