Kiki Van Eijk: 20 Years of Design
EINDHOVEN, the Netherlands — If one theme unites the work of the versatile Dutch designer Kiki Van Eijk, it’s that there isn’t any one theme.
For 20 years, she and her collaborators have produced lighting, sculpture, furnishings, family objects, wall hangings, carpets and extra utilizing supplies starting from ceramics to textiles.
Ms. Van Eijk, 42, designs at Kiki & Joost, the studio and workshop she shares along with her husband, Joost Van Bleiswijk, 44, one other outstanding designer. “Joost and I are very shut and infrequently work collectively,” she mentioned. “With him, I’ve grown and turn out to be extra daring. However it’s additionally actually necessary to have your personal id.”
On the studio, a workforce of craftspeople helps her to appreciate about half her initiatives; the remaining are created in session with the commissioning shoppers. Ms. Van Eijk mentioned her studio used the pandemic lockdown within the spring to give you new concepts: “We simply preserve constructive and can see how issues evolve.”
Ms. Van Eijk believes that each venture requires a unique strategy, and he or she prefers to be free to determine it. “That’s why perhaps my work might be complicated to folks at instances,” she mentioned with fun. “So, sorry for the confusion. I don’t thoughts when not all the things is evident.”
Here’s a take a look at a few of her most notable initiatives.
The felted wool rug, Ms. Van Eijk’s commencement venture from Design Academy Eindhoven, began her profession. She mentioned she averted creating something comparable for years as a result of “I didn’t need to simply be the woman with the rugs.”
A mantel clock in white ceramic that has the look of fabric, it was the primary piece within the Tender line, nonetheless in manufacturing. Ms. Van Eijk stitched the unique type in felt, then made a mould with the assistance of Cor Unum, a Dutch ceramics producer. A black model debuted this 12 months.
Reduce and Paste
Commissioned by Claudia Pignatale of Secondome Design Gallery in Rome and proven at Design Miami/Basel and different gala’s, the gathering of seven objects illustrated Ms. Van Eijk’s artistic vary. The novelties included a cart, cupboard and chicken cage, produced in sudden mixtures of metallic, wooden, ceramics, textiles and extra. Ms. Van Eijk made the unique fashions, which then have been scaled to life-size proportions at Kiki & Joost.
Ms. Van Eijk knotted brass wire to create an ethereal skeleton for this grandfather clock of types. Then Murray Moss, who ran the Moss design store in New York Metropolis on the time, commissioned a bunch of mantel clocks made with the identical approach however in 14 completely different finishes. Since then, the Floating line, Ms. Van Eijk’s most commercially profitable, has expanded to incorporate lampshades, candleholders and extra. “I’m proud that it’s nonetheless up-to-date and folks nonetheless fall in love with it,” she mentioned.
Ms. Van Eijk visited the Berengo Glass Studio in Venice a number of instances to collaborate with a grasp glass blower for a set of seven glass items representing the necessities of life, a group known as Drink! Eat! Enjoyable! Relaxation! Assume! Dream! Love! Its unpredictable colours and shapes have been “very intuitive, primarily based on the phrases,” she mentioned.
Fleur de Glacé
Ms. Van Eijk created this elegant ice cream cake design for a Häagen-Dazs Christmas season promotion. Impressed by the shapes of ice crystals and mountain flowers like edelweiss, she began with a 3-D Styrofoam mannequin and finally created a silicone mould for the producer. The dessert was offered in macadamia nut brittle and mango sorbet flavors — and “it was so scrumptious,” she mentioned.
For a 12 months after the 2013 start of her first youngster, Ms. Van Eijk centered totally on surviving day after day: “Giving start is essentially the most back-to-the-animal-world factor you are able to do. It’s very stunning.” This sequence was impressed by that interval, and underscored what she known as “essence and origin.” Forged in bronze with hand-woven textiles, it included a daybed, desk, mirror and lamp, and was first proven at Design Miami/Basel by the Milan gallerist Nina Yashar.
Commissioned by the Dutch pattern forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort for Google’s pop-up exhibition throughout Salone del Cellular in Milan, the six wall hangings showcased textiles getting used for Google’s Softwear line of cloth-covered merchandise, together with a digital actuality headset and good audio system. “They despatched me the merchandise and the materials, and I made collages within the weaving lab utilizing contrasts, constructions and textures,” Ms. Van Eijk mentioned. “It felt like a subsequent step in my creative world.”
These flowing, repetitive shapes made with connecting ceramic items and LED lighting depend on a way initially used to supply Venetian glass chandeliers. As the road is generally made to order, inside decorators and designers have collaborated along with her on sizes and styles.
Seven summary objects discover the area between sculpture and structure and could possibly be used as room dividers, pedestals or artwork. “Their perform isn’t outlined; I simply give a touch,” mentioned Ms. Van Eijk, who experimented with bioplastic, pigment and sand to use layers of coloration.
In 2012, throughout a manufacturing unit tour on the French crystal firm Saint-Louis, Ms. Van Eijk was enthralled by its rows of producing molds. “They have been just like the queens of the corporate, like little characters,” she mentioned. “I used to be so in love with them.” She gave every object on this 2012 assortment the form of a mould, with hand-cut components like the corporate’s signature diamonds and bevels. Ms. Van Eijk, who was pregnant through the design course of, known as the sequence Matrice, a French phrase for womb. This 12 months, Saint-Louis launched Ms. Van Eijk’s additions to the road: a desk lamp and a group of vases.
Ms. Van Eijk was among the many 9 worldwide designers and artists invited to create large-scale installations for the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Competition in California, which was canceled due to the pandemic. Her design, known as Buoyed, options three 36-foot-tall mixed-media sculptures, her largest work thus far, and is now anticipated to look on the subsequent pageant, at any time when that occurs. “Joost, me and our employees are all huge music and pageant lovers,” she mentioned. “We’re very excited.”
“Imaginings: Dutch Design by Kiki Van Eijk”
For 2 years, Ms. Van Eijk labored with Theun Mosk, a Dutch set and manufacturing designer, and Suzan Rüsseler, a curator on the Textile Museum in Tilburg, the Netherlands, on a retrospective exhibition. “Imaginings: Dutch Design by Kiki Van Eijk” runs by Sept. 12, 2021, on the museum. “Not solely is Kiki an necessary Dutch designer,” Ms. Rüsseler mentioned, “she’s actually a conceptual storyteller, creating her personal world utilizing craftsmanship and nature.” Ms. Van Eijk mentioned: “It’s not chronological, however has tales about my life. It has a really particular rhythm from busyness to quiet. It’s immersive, however not all the time apparent. I didn’t need to clarify all the things.”
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