Every October, Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven is a riot of colour and innovation. Rugs and textiles are always well represented at the event and this year they were used to represent a number of important causes from the war in Ukraine, to drought caused by climate change, to a questioning of the digital age, and sustainability. Here COVER takes a look at seven textile highlights from Dutch Design Week 2022.
Liselot Cobelens’ Dryland installation featured a woollen carpet that consists of eight different colour combinations to mimic a grass landscape. The rug symbolises the drying up and damaged caused by climate change to the land in the Netherlands, an area of Europe that is always associated with endless waterways. Cobelens’ installation at Dutch Design Week featured the rug and her investigation into the desiccation of the land. The work was her graduation project at the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague.
Home(Land) is an exhibition in which Ukrainian and Dutch designers reflect on (the loss of) home, through the narratives of sustainable design practices. Made by Ukrainian designer Ruslana Goncharuk, the story of the gunya—a Ukrainian shepherd’s coat—is part of the tale being told. Textiles on show are made of wool, hemp, and an innovative biomaterial from hemp fibre and mycelium by Dutch designer Dasha Tsapenko. Home(Land) is set to travel in northern Europe and at some point be presented in Kyiv.
Set against our digitally-focused world, the ‘Low Resolution’ exhibition saw Kiki van Eijk and Joost van Bleiswijk showcase projects that use a low-resolution approach to production as a core value. Part of the display were van Eijk’s latest knitted wall textiles—inspired by the ancient firing Raku technique—plus a series of wool, cotton, felt, linen, and leather textile collage sketches that feature tufting and are based on her spontaneous crayons drawings (pictured).
huqrugs are zero-waste flatweaves designed in Amsterdam and handwoven in the Alps with ‘unconventional quirks’, in the words of the founder and creative industry veteran, Frans Verschuren. For Dutch Design Week huqrugs showed off new collections with ‘uniq’ textures and weaves. Rugs are made to order so no waste is created.
Curated by Job Keja and Sandra Keja Planken the ‘Messmerizing’ exhibition was ‘a design playhouse’ featuring curated objects that provide enchanting experiences and blend the boundaries between art and design. The display featured several of Planken’s tufted rugs and tapestries, including The Nature Face, made of eucalyptus yarns and bamboo.
Emma Bellengé is a Belgian based textile artist who recently received her Master degree in Textile Design at LUCA School of Arts in Gent. LUCA had a show of work at Dutch Design Week, including Bellengé’s Walking Colours jacquard weaving, crochet and embroidery works. The textile designs are derived from snapshots taken on a walk around a city during a time of restriction and they demonstrate her fascination with colour and repetition.
Creative studio House of Rubber‘s interdisciplinary output occupies realms between fashion and sculpture, driven by a fascination with absurd materials. At Dutch Design Week 2022, it presented Lady in Rug, an animated robotic artwork three years in the making. Eleven square metres of tufted rug cloak the Lady who seems softly to breathe and move her arm to pet her voluminous skirts.