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Industrious|Artefacts > Sun 12 Feb 2012

The evolution of crafts


As a component of The Year of Doing, the Zuiderzee Museum in Enkhuizen is organizing the exhibition INDUSTRIOUS|Artefacts, the evolution of crafts, in which guest curators Rianne Makkink and Jurgen Bey (Studio Makkink & Bey), by means of current work of various designers, show how historical crafts in the former Zuiderzee region have evolved and how they influence contemporary design and industrial processes. The exhibition runs up to 12 February 2012.

In the previous century, the reclamation of land by closing off the Zuiderzee had an enormous impact on the local economy and culture. Old crafts were no longer what they had been. The work of the cooper, rope-maker, net-maker, tanner and coppersmith was supplemented with mechanical skills, but this did not mean that the craft vanished completely – it was transformed into something new: the fisherman took up new employment in a button factory or in the ceramics industry.

Own small industries
In this exhibition, Studio Makkink & Bey examines the development of the craft by demonstrating interrelationships between production processes from the past of the Zuiderzee and contemporary translations of tailor-made industry. In the past few years, attention has been increasingly devoted to the design process, the action. Within that process, artists and designers create their own crafts and their own small-scale industries or artefacts.

Moulds and machines
Studio Makkink & Bey provides a platform for national and international designers who display, in a broad sense, the evolution of crafts and artefacts in their work. For example, designer Merel Karhof built the Wind Knitting Factory, a machine that knits a scarf using wind energy. In cooperation with Tim Knapen, Unfold developed a 3-D printer for ceramics. The exhibition juxtaposes these works with historical craft tools: a needle for mending nets and moulds from the ceramics industry.

The exhibition INDUSTRIOUS| Artefacts, the evolution of crafts has been generated in conjunction with Premsela and the Sandberg Institute and has been made possible by a contribution from the BankGiro Lottery.

Studio Makkink & Bey
Studio Makkink & Bey is a co-operative venture involving architect Rianne Makkink and designer Jurgen Bey. In conjunction with their design team, they have been working within various realms of applied art since 2002. In this activity, they study the force field between the private and the public domains. This critical research has been directive in issues concerning public space, urban planning, architecture, exhibition layout, interior design and product design.