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Detail Dryland

With Dryland, Liselot Cobelens investigated how dehydration arose in the Netherlands. It is hard to imagine that a slow desiccation is taking place. Even the inhabitants are not yet aware of the silent killer drought. Four consequences are translated into an impressive wool carpet.

The Dutch landscape is associated with lots of water.

Splashing ducks, green lawns, grazing cows by the ditch and many canals. The story of desiccation is a difficult one. Because the interests of different parties are so diverse, they create a polarisation that seems to stand in the way of a solution. The approach to dehydration in the Netherlands is at a turning point. At the local level there are small projects to rewet areas, but a national approach is still awaited.

Effects of dehydration

Dryland explains how dehydration arose and shows four different perspectives on the consequences.

Dryland' deals with the history and the dream that we, the Dutch, have with water. The pattern of the carpet begins to form. The story of the 'loss' of plants and crops is told from the perspective of a farmer. This is reflected in the parts of the carpet that have been cut away. Sagging' is a story that occurs in peat meadow and clay areas. Where the groundwater is too low, the ground collapses a few millimetres per year. The heights and lows of the carpet are the story of this. Finally, there is 'burning'. Parts of the carpet are scorched and tell the story of a natural fire caused by persistent drought.


These stories are translated into a landscape carpet. During the production, the carpet went through several treatments. These actions depict the role of the human hand in the story of the slow desiccation of the Netherlands. The carpet is inspired by the area around the Deurnese Peel. Here, the interests of the groundwater are diametrically opposed.

About Liselot Cobelens

Studio Liselot Cobelens focuses on research, material, process and storytelling through design. Fascinated by social issues and production processes, she creates unique products that make difficult subjects understandable.

Dryland in production.

Dryland from above

Detail Dryland story loss

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