Dutch Invertuals
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Designers develop not products, but a single layer for the Dutch Invertuals exhibit at Dutch Design Week

Perhaps the most defining element of Dutch Design Week is the reigning sentiment of overwhelming freedom. The designers don’t seem crushed under the weight of producing to survive and many exhibits spend more time examining the design process than worrying if there is a viable product at the end of the chain.

What’s so perfect about this way of viewing design is that it’s ultimately more representative of design as an occupation. Designers have thousands of ideas and will research several materials. They are constantly experimenting and sometimes they succeed, but sometimes nothing fruitful comes of the process. But that doesn’t mean its not worth examining.

The thriving Dutch design collaborative Dutch Invertuals presents an annual exhibit at Dutch Design Week that doesn’t commission specific products. The designers simply design something in line with a specific theme. Function is not a central question. For this year’s exhibition, titled ‘Cohesion’, the designers were asked to create a single layer. Each designer’s interpretation of the task creates a visual symphony that dances happily between art and design. As founder/curator Wendy Plomp explains, “This exhibition is a prelude to the next step, a new material, technique or insight.” Feast your eyes below.


Flat Solid by Jeroen Wand is a membrane of pressed paper on a wooden structure. The production process being uncontrollable, every panel is entirely unique.


Frames & Volumes by Studio Mieke Meijer was inspired by Chemelot’s industrial site. It explores the influence of light on our perception of shape, color and material.


The perforated material of Flat Light by Daphna Laurens generates deceptive depth in a relatively flat object.


Combining wood with rubber joints and various textures, Structure Studies by Brit van Nerven & Roos Gomperts can become an object or simply a decorative element.


From afar, the Interline Panels by Raw Color look deceptively like glass panels but they are made of translucent textile and opaque foil with adjustable transparency.