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(Archive) Things that Matter

The subtheme Things that Matter takes centre stage at the new Microlab Hall location. A selection of designers present their work here.

This project was part of DDW 2021
Boudewijn Bollmann

Things that Matter deals with the relation between man and objects and poses the question: with so many products within reach, how does this influence what we consider meaningful and what not?

What defines value?

The rise of mass production in the 20th century has changed the way we relate to our products. When something stops functioning, we replace it. When something has become abundant, we throw it away. Repairing is often more expensive than buying new. Such behavior has drastically affected how we value and use products. And through producing and consuming, we have increased pressure on the environment we depend on. Fortunately, new sustainable materials and production processes to improve existing products are being developed. This makes production more sustainable, but should we not also critically look at human behavior and the way we deal with objects? Now that every product seems within reach, how has this influenced our judgement whether something is valuable, or not?

Products as carriers of meaning

Products are lot more than mere disposables, or replaceable practicalities. They are carriers of meaning, of personal stories, of societal beliefs, of craft and of knowledge. Products embody our collective history, and we are literally more connected to them than we would suspect. Design determines many aspects of a product, but how does one design to create value?

Here, in Things that Matter @ Microlab Hall products that deal with the connection between people and things are presented - from individual work to group exhibitions. These projects explore the meaning of objects, and they challenge you to (re)think what can define value today.

The following designers and/or group exhibitions will take place at Things that Matter @ Microlab Hall:

- Aniela Fidler
- Antoine Peters
- Zeeuws Museum
- Ineke Hans
- Christien Meindertsma (ambassadors project)
- Circulair Warenhuis
- 100 Opheto Curacao
- Crafts Council Nederland
- Dutch Design Awards
- Studio Nienke Hoogvliet
- United Matters
- Centre for Creativity Slovenia
- Elisa van Joolen