Puzzle with creative chaos
Magazine Contact #21
The Dutch Design Week (DDW) is held every year in Eindhoven in October. A quarter of a million visitors and more than 2,000 domestic and foreign designers come together to indulge their passions for the latest trends and developments in the world of design. The chance is high during this period that they tilt tables and have to push ceiling-high steel scaffolding, as the DDW centre, the “Design Innovation Space”, is simultaneously used as a cooperative working space and openly accessible design think tank. Users are called upon here to compile their optimum furniture configuration themselves at their own discretion, depending on their needs. Castors on the ends of desks, conference tables, file cabinets, pin boards and four metre high room partitions make the job of moving them realisable with just a hand movement. “I’m not a friend of permanently installed, heavy office furniture,” said Amsterdam designer Dave Keune. “The diversity of design is much greater with flexible, moveable furniture elements – and it is way more fun to use! In this way the space can be re-experienced and rediscovered every day as a new one.” A little booklet that Keune pressed into his client’s hand upon completion of the DIS depicts a range of different configurations. The graphics – 14 versions with in each case 14 sub-variations, in total 196 different layouts are here to serve as an inspiration for the people working here.
People sit in a circle to work as a think tank or sit in rows to listen to a lecture, then work alone or one-on-one, then brainstorm or tinker with details, quiet and alone or at full volume. There are even bleachers leading up to the lofty heights on one of the nearly ceiling-high luxury scaffoldings, offering somewhat of an overview of the versatile, dynamic office puzzle. One cannot rid one’s self of the impression that someone is amusing themselves here about the notions from the office furniture industry laboriously introduced over the past few years, such as “me” places, “we” places, central and regeneration areas, as the DIS is all of that and nothing at the same time. Now it’s like this and in a half hour it’ll perhaps be totally different again. Where it’s all happening is a vacant, listed factory building in the northwest section of the city, Strijp-S. Where once electric and electronic devices were manufactured for Philips, creative processes are now happening.