A myriad of things to do at DDW

Photo credit: Dutch Design Week
Dutch Design Week (DDW) is only days away. Here are some more things you can do during this world-famous design event being held in Eindhoven from 20 – 28 October.

The Dutch Design Foundation is the driving force behind DDW, as well as the World Design Event. The 2018 Creative Embassies stems from last year’s first World Design Event.

Creative Embassies is a community that is tackling future challenges that cities and their inhabitants face. It is made up of, among others, international creative thinkers and doers, business communities, and educational institutions. These Creative Embassies connect themes, challenges, and visions on many topics.

Each domain-specific Creative Embassy forms a hub that covers all aspects of a particular topic. This year, the Creative Embassies are zooming in on six topics – circularity, health, mobility, food, water and urban transformation. Two of these hubs are highlighted here.

Embassy of Health: Designing for Chronic Health

Designers are active in the health care system in many different ways. Whether it be designing serious games for patients and healthcare providers or ‘hacking’ healthcare applications, Through existing and speculative projects, the Embassy of Health shows how designers play a key role in our health and well-being.

One of these design projects is called Carebnb. Here, two designers have created a B&B platform exclusively meant for people in need of informal care on a temporary basis. Carebnb matches these people with individuals offering a room in their homes. Medical care is provided by the local nurse and physiotherapist. The homeowner also helps with daily tasks. This encourages a quicker recovery. The project is supported by the Creative Industries Fund NL. 

Biotechnology meets tradition

In another project Kuang-Yi Ku, a resident artist at Waag, Amsterdam, addresses the huge demand for wild animal parts in traditional Chinese medicine. This is a real threat to nature conservation. In his Tiger Penis Project, Ku proposes a solution for threatened species like rhinos and tigers. Why not cultivate the body parts in a laboratory, using biotechnology? This project bridges old traditions and technological innovation, helping to preserve both cultural traditions as well as wildlife.

DDW visitors can find this ’embassy’ in Strijp T+R – B8 at the Innovation Powerhouse, 31A  Zwaanstraat.

Embassy of Water: Ideas for a Water-Friendly City

The Embassy of Water is a platform for water-related design. It was formed to inspire and accelerate innovation. This embassy will become a creative ‘ Water Hub’  – a place where future-oriented collaborations can be established with the aim of achieving a sustainable, water-friendly society.

This year’s Embassy of Water focuses on two themes – Water Sensitive Urban Design (Water in the City) and Nature-Based Solutions (The Power of Water).

This ’embassy”s starting point is the question: How can we turn Eindhoven into a water-sensitive city, prepared for the challenges posed by urbanisation and climate change? ‘This question comes from the urban water management system that is called Water Sensitive Urban Design‘, says Van der Poll, curator of the Embassy of Water.

Very effective approach

‘This approach is regarded worldwide as a very effective solution for tackling urbanisation and climate change problems, such as rainwater problems and heat islands, the places in the city that are extra warm due to too much concrete and lack of green space.’

The avenue of design focuses on the reduction of water consumption, the collection, cleaning and recycling of rainwater and the construction of sustainable drainage systems. In the water-sensitive city, rainwater is no longer led directly to the sewer system, but collected and delayed by green roofs, rain gates, water squares and ponds.

Van der Poll’s vision has been realised in several projects. One of these is Rain (a) Way – an urban design agency founded in 2014 by Fien Dekker. She was inspired during her travels to Africa and Japan. Her main goal is to implement her special tiles in all cities worldwide so people can use rainwater more effectively.

This ’embassy’ will be in Hallenweg – G4, Bergmannstraat 76 (Atelier NL).

Please visit the DDW website for the full programme of these six Creative Embassies, as well as all the other events taking place.

Another venue, MU, will this year organise plenty of activities during the DDW. Join the conversation about design during the Create Out Loud talk shows, take part in interactive workshops, or meet other makers. One of the highlights is The New Newsroom exhibition that is going to be held at the MU Artspace.

The New Newsroom: Reporting Redesigned

There are so many ways to get news nowadays. News apps, videos, podcasts, Twitter feeds, Virtual Reality – it has come a long way since the days of the town crier or the printed press.

How can people use the power of digital technology, big data, artificial intelligence, and social media to create exciting, meaningful content? And how can people engage with the news on a personal level?

These are some of the questions being asked in The New Newsroom. Here journalists, and others, including designers investigate innovative formats and analyse the news. They then present their findings in visuals and exhibitions. This exhibition is not only on during DDW. It is on right now and runs until 11 November.

Visit the MU website for their complete DDW programme.

Main photo: Ubu chair by Studio Panq (on display at the Embassy of Circularity: Exploring Circular Housing, Strijp-S – A1, Klokgebouw 50 – Hall 3)

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