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Piet Hein Eek #DDW13

The Piet Hein Eek factory just outside of Strijp has been buzzing for a few years now but this time we discovered some fresh brands and design studios housed at the location, not to mention a great exhibition upstairs. 

By Cassandra Pizzey / 31-10-2013

With Piet Hein Eek’s ever-growing empire it’s always worth a visit during Dutch Design Week, whether you’re looking for great classic designs by the brand, want to discover new talent or just browse the shop (that features some brands you won’t find elsewhere). This year however, we came across some new names added to the Eek family. 

The main, central building is where you will find the workshop of Piet Hein Eek himself, a large task force, heavy machinery and perhaps an unfinished driftwood cabinet or two. Wander upstairs and you’ll find a large exhibition space where a variety of shows is held. During Dutch Design Week we were delighted to find the work of graphic designer Anthon Beeke and his former students. The top floor offered a look at his work through the years, including many famous posters for theatre group Globe. 

One floor down we were treated to work from those inspired by Beeke, from graphic design to contemporary art and autonomous design. Timon van der Hijden was busy printing postcards and we were taken back to the beginnings of Ontwerplabel Vij5’s newspaper wood courtesy of Anieke Branderhorst. The concept by Lidewij Edelkoort had been curated here by Petra Janssen and Mariola López Mariño, a good mix of work from various disciplines and interesting to see how success has been gained by each. 

Opposite the main building are a series of smaller studios and workshops inhabited by young designers and studios. We stumbled across the studio of rENs recognizable by the collection of red stained materials but somehow strange situated in a white box of a space. Nevertheless, the designers’ fascination for the colour red and how it changes from material to material is admirable. The duo (Renee Mennen and Stefanie van Keijsteren) recently participated in Beijing design week where they held demonstrations of their work methods. 

A few doors down we found the Ontwerpduo. The location offers space for a workshop, gallery and pop-up shop and visitors could see the various products being made. It’s great to see all the products by this relatively young label together and get an idea of their self-created world in which fairytales and reality seamlessly blend. Their latest product is a series of mirrors split into three sections that wouldn’t look out of place in a modern-day Snow White tale. 

All photos © Design.nl

www.pietheineek.nl