Netherlands

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Photography

The Ever-Present Glow of LED Greenhouses Documented by Aerial Photographer Tom Hegen

October 22, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

All photographs © Tom Hegen, shared with permission of the artist

German photographer Tom Hegen, who specializes in aerial photography, recently traveled to the Netherlands to document the country’s LED greenhouses. The greenhouses were developed as a response to the small country’s growing need for food both within its own borders and to the international market. Dutch exporters are second only to the U.S. industry for global food exports as measured by value. Although the greenhouses offer incredible efficiency in their design, cultivating food year-round through high temperatures and humidity levels, their round-the-clock use also gives off a great deal of light pollution. Hegen flew in a helicopter at night to capture the yellow and purple glow that the greenhouses give off, their geometric planes of illumination standing out from the dark atmosphere.

The photographer tells Colossal that his work centers around the topic of the Anthropocene (the era of human influence on Earth’s biological, geological, and atmospheric processes). “In my photography, I explore the origin and scale of that idea in an effort to understand the dimensions of man’s intervention in natural spaces and to direct attention toward how humans can take responsibility.” Hegen explains that aerial photography in particular helps convey the Anthropocene because it shows the dimensions and scale of human impact more effectively.

“I am also fascinated by the abstraction that comes with the change of perspective; seeing something familiar from a new vantage point that you are not used to,” Hegen tells Colossal. “I use abstraction and aestheticization as a language to inspire people and also to offer the viewer a connection to the subject as they need to decode what they are looking at.”

In 2018 Hegen published his first aerial photo book, HABITAT, and next year he will start working on a follow-up, the artist shares with Colossal. Keep up with Hegen’s travels and latest projects on Instagram and Behance.

 

 



Design

The World’s Largest Bicycle Garage Opens in Utrecht

August 9, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Photos: Petra Appelhof

Colossal recently covered Utrecht’s efforts to green up their public transit with bee-friendly bus stops, and the Dutch city is at it again with the world’s largest bike garage. The multi-level structure, recently completed, is totally underground, allowing the public square above to be a pedestrian-first space. Designed by Ector Hoogstad Architects in collaboration with the Sant & Co firm and Royal Haskoning DHV, the garage accommodate 13,500 bicycles. This quantity unseats Tokyo as home to the world’s largest bike garage. To learn more about the specifics and logistical considerations of the design, visit the architect’s website. (via designboom)

 

 



Art

Dutch Artists Transform a Utrecht Apartment Building into a Tri-Level Trompe L’Oeil Bookcase

April 8, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Dutch street artists Jan Is De Man and Deef Feed recently painted a literary trompe l’oeil mural on an apartment building in Utrecht, Netherlands. The pair turned the side of the three-story building into a multi-level bookshelf packed with a selection of their favorite books from their own collections, in addition to a few made-up titles featuring their own names. Another XXXL bookshelf exists in Kansas City, Missouri on the side of a parking garage belonging to the central branch of the city’s public library. You can see more of Jan Is De Man’s artwork on his website, and Deef Feed’s paintings on Facebook. (via Laughing Squid)

   

 

 



Art

WATERLICHT: An Immersive Light Installation Conveys the Power and Poetry of Water

March 7, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Dutch artist and designer Daan Roosegaarde created WATERLICHT to raise awareness about rising water levels and the need to continue to innovate and adapt to our changing environment. The ethereal projection uses a combination of LED and lenses, which forms a constantly shifting layer of billowing blue light above the heads of viewers. Since its inception in 2016 as a site-specific artwork for Amsterdam’s Dutch District Water Board, the immersive installation has been shown across the world in London, Toronto, Paris, Rotterdam, Dubai, and at the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

In a statement on the artist’s website, WATERLICHT is described as a “dream landscape about the power and poetry of water… WATERLICHT creates a collective experience to share the importance of water innovation.” Roosegaarde seeks to encourage positive thinking towards adaptations like building floating cities and generating power from water, while also offering a visceral reminder of the power of water and how it can reclaim land.

Roosegaarde’s body of work focuses on the complex relationship between people and our natural surroundings, including smog, space waste, and rainbows. He was recently named a visiting professor at Monterrey University in Monterrey, Mexico for 2019. You can discover more of Roosegaarde’s projects on his website, and watch an interview with the artist at the site of WATERLICHT’s Toronto installation in the video below. (thnx Marlies!)

 

 



Design

Cyclo Knitter: A Bicycle-Based Machine That Knits a Scarf in Five Minutes

June 12, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

The Cyclo Knitter is a bicycle-based machine by design student George Barratt-Jones. The contraption is made from a simple combination of wood and bike parts, and allows one to knit a scarf through light exercise. Barratt-Jones came up with the idea one day while waiting for the train in Eindhoven. His invention allows other riders to stay warm while passing time on the platform, and step away with a winter accessory.

If you like this creative knitting mechanism, check out the Rocking Knit, a rocking chair designed by Damien Ludi and Colin Peillex that converts rocking into knitted hats.

 

 

 



Art Design

The Annual ‘Corso Zundert’ Flower Parade Features Radically Designed Floats Adorned with Dahlias

September 5, 2016

Christopher Jobson

IMG_0011_ErwinMartens

All photographs by Malou Evers, Erwin Martens, and Werner Pellis, courtesy Corso Zundert.

Founded in 1936, the annual Corso Zundert parade is a celebration of the Netherlands’ most iconic exports: flowers. The event is held every year in the small town of Zundert where 20 teams of volunteers from different hamlets compete for the best designed parade float. More than being covered almost completely in vibrant dahlia flowers, the float designs often incorporate moving elements and are accompanied by marching bands and other performers along the parade route.

This year’s winner titled “Dangerous Transportation” featured a giant dragon and was designed by the Tiggelaar hamlet. You can see a full listing of all 20 parade floats here.

More photos of the 2016 event were shot by John DG Photography, and you can watch a video of the entire parade below. See our coverage of previous years: 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.

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Art Design

The Annual ‘Corso Zundert’ Parade Honors Van Gogh with Monumental Floats Adorned with Flowers

September 8, 2015

Christopher Jobson

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Photo by Erwin Martens

Another year, another Corso Zundert (previously), the legendary parade of giant floats adored with thousands of dahlia flowers that twist through the narrow streets of Zundert, Netherlands. This year 19 teams took inspiration from the work of Vincent van Gogh who was born in Zundert 162 years ago. The towering floats borrow colors, motifs, and imagery from van Gogh’s painting including several interpretations of the artist’s self-portraits.

Started in 1936, the parade celebrates the region’s reputation as a global supplier of dahlia flowers, an area now covering 33 hectares (81 acres) of 600,000 dahlia bulbs in fifty different species. The first Corso Zundert parades were modest in size featuring horse-drawn carts or bicycles covered in flowers, but the event has since grown dramatically. The floats now merge more ambitious aspects of contemporary/urban art with traditional parade floats as part of a friendly annual competition. You can see plenty more photos over on BN DeStem.

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Photo by Werner Pellis

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Photo by Werner Pellis

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Photo by Malou Evers

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Photos by Photo by Werner Pellis

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Photos by Joyce van Belkom

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Photos by Joyce van Belkom

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Photo by Erwin Marten

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Photo by Malou Evers

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Photo by Werner Pellis

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Photo by Erwin Martens