To hatch a good idea (an egg) one needs a ‘chicken’. It’s the famous ‘the chicken or the egg’ dilemma. For the Keep an Eye Foundation, it was important that the great ideas were hatched, reguardless of the dilemma's. This was the main objective for the Keep an Eye foundation: to keep an eye on promising, young artists and musicians so that these talents are provided an opportunity to hatch their own ‘golden’ eggs.
Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant
Since 2010, the Keep an Eye Foundation has been responsible for awarding the annual Keep an Eye Grant, which was presented during the official opening of our Graduation Show. Starting from the new academic year, 2016-2017, the Foundation intends to take a more in-depth and focused approach to its ‘talent development’ objective. This means that the target group will consist of alumni who graduated two to three years ago. An interesting time to stop and consider questions such as: ‘where do you stand at this point in your career’ and ‘how can the Keep an Eye Foundation help you in the continued development of your talent’? Four designers who can come up with a well-phrased answer will be eligible for the ‘Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant’ worth € 10,000.
Meet the Nominees
We would like you to meet the Design Talent Grant nominees - all Design Academy Eindhoven alumni from the past two to three year. Some have continued to developed their Graduation projects (you might remember them), others have new ideas to 'hatch'. For the Award, all nominees have been asked to present their project in writing before pitching it to the jury. Read their introductions (some in Dutch - how they presented themselves) below.
Ward is a communication designer and anthropologist. As both designer and anthropologist, he combines different skill sets and uses them in one project. He thinks about messaging, communication or media through different forms of design: graphic design, installation design, moving image or webdesign. As an anthropologist, he reads and writes on an academic level and does field work through academic methods, which lead him to more thoroughly research visual projects.
"Why do I think anthropology and design can benefit each other? And why do I think it is important to look at design in a larger social context? Simply because I truly believe that through design, we can establish social transformation. Through design we can work towards equality, sustainability and peace."
With the Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant, Ward would like to start conducting research, meaning interviewing designers and visiting their work places, and publish about their design methods and his findings in an essay. He also wants to start a platform called ‘Matters of a Certain Relevance’, on which dialogues and researches can take place.
Gabriel Ann Maher
"The Keep an Eye Grant was offered to Design Academy Masters students for the first time in 2014. I had the honour to receive this for my Graduation project DE__SIGN, which gave me the opportunity to found a strong - and strengthening - methodology and approach to design.
I continue to develop and push the theories and tools which began in my graduation work, to translate my research into a form that will speak to a broader public. For this, I am collaborating with a media platform and continue to exchange with students of design through a.o. workshops at Design Academy Eindhoven and the KABK, in Den Haag.
Within my pursuit to communicate my research to students and a non-institutional public (musea, galleries, etc), the main question I wanted to answer is 'How to translate research to entertainment?' In response to this question, I have learnt to DJ. I want to deliver research through the tools of the DJ (sound mixing, voice, effects, visuals), with the hope that this strategy can generate an energy and an exchange towards research."
Wat begon als afstudeerproject is nu Fiens eigen bedrijf geworden. In het jaar na de Design Academy ontwikkelde ze haar Rain(a)Way tegels door naar een markt-klaar product. Door het ontwikkelen van de tegels en verschillende andere projecten heeft ze haar visie verder ontwikkeld. Ze wil laten zien dat regenwater niet alleen een probleem is, maar dat het kansen biedt en een bron van inspiratie kan zijn.
De Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant wil Fien in zetten om over twee jaar projecten van het begin tot eind te kunnen uitvoeren: van het eerste onderzoek voor het concept en ontwerp tot de uitbesteding van de realisatie. Door zoveel mogelijk met ontwerpbureaus te werken, van hen te leren en kennis uit te wisselen wordt het netwerk van Fien vergroot en zal dit ook weer nieuwe projecten genereren. Over 5 jaar is de Rain(a)Way filosofie toegepast in pleinen en woonwijken door heel Nederland. Zo kunnen we ook in de toekomst met droge voeten genieten van onze omgeving.
Teresa van Dongen
"The years after the Graduation Show 2014 was an exciting period that made me stronger, but not only that: I was nominated with my work for a Keep an Eye grant, I won the Eyes on Talents Award, which allowed me to exhibit in the Musee des Arts Décoratifs (Louvre) and I won a Dutch Design Award in the category of Young Designer.
It was an overwhelming year, that went by in a blink. No post-Academy “black hole” for me - nothing like that at all. That was quite a contrast to this year: things started to settle down and get back to a kind of “new normal”. Until now, I have been focussing on new projects and commissions, and off course I can and will continue to do so, but next year I would like to reflect on what I have made so far, and go into the opportunities that lie in my autonomous work. I have come to believe that these works, that I made for me, without a business model, could actually be turned into products for a customer. Right now there is my current business model, where my autonomous work makes my name and provide me with related assignments or commissions. But for the coming year I am hoping to find the time and opportunity to develop especially “Ambio” (my bioluminescent lamp) and “A spark of Life” into actual consumer products. I see the opportunity now and think this would be a great and important step in my work."
"After graduating, my project 'Bionic Chair' was well published around the world by respected media (Dezeen, The Guardian, Volkskrant, Reuters International). After a failled attempt for developing it within the furniture industry, I started to see my graduation project as an approach instead of a product - I gave myself one more month to find clients. Schiphol Real Estate had direct interest in the concept of applying environmental enrichment into the work environment. Environmental Enrichment (EE) is part of neurological science on how the environment influences the brain. Together with a group we founded Enrichers to create enrichment-based office environments to make people feel better. It's crazy to imagine that despite evidence the environment does influence the brain, even at the only matser degree on Environmental Psychology, findings on Environmental Enrichment is hardly being educated.
With the Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant, I would like to release pressure of the entire budget we need for executing the research. It will give Enrichers more space to prototype and create possibilities to invest in graduation works of our interns."
"After graduating in 2014, I funded a design studio in Eindhoven, Marginal, in order to facilitate collaboration and bigger commissions. Marginal is now starting to be an established studio, and for this reason I am reworking the “brand” of the studio - to express the depth in a project that characterises Marginal and what would otherwise be lost in the design world. This project is a meta-design idea about using material narratives for complex social issues.
Marginal is currently opening a second location in Palermo; we want to bridge the south of Italy with the core of Europe. We are structuring European funding application; working with museums, international partners (BJCEM) and independent galleries and cultural associations. At the moment, we are self-funding the operation, but with our limited finance the Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant would be a great support in financing this gap-period."
"Na enthousiast ontvangst van de afstudeerwerken tijdens de Graduation Show 2014 besloot ik zelfstandig het diepe in te springen. Het idee was om eigenhandig te ondervinden wat er voor nodig was om producten op de markt te zetten.
In deze periode leerde ik veel over de achterkant van onze producten - een aspect dat tijdens mijn opleiding op Design Academy Eindhoven weinig aan bod is gekomen. Ik viel van verbazing in verbazing. Naarmate in verder in de wereld van e-afval terecht kwam leerde ik meer over onderwerpen als slechte arbeidsomstandigheden in grondstofmijnen en het dumpen van e-afval in derdewereldlanden. Tegelijkertijd droeg ik met trots bij aan het verbeteren van het recycle gedrag van de gemiddelde Nederlander. Het is tenslotte onbegrijpelijk dat we in een ontwikkeld land als het onze, met zo’n groot aanbod en gebruik van elektronische apparatuur, slecht 50 tot 60% van onze e-producten recyclen.
Het winnen van de Keep an Eye Talent Grant geeft ruimte om te investeren in een nieuw project dat vanuit onderbouwde design research aantoont dat onze elektronica beter ontworpen kan worden. Beginnende met een eenvoudig product dat laagdrempelig vermarkt kan worden."
Fictional Collective represents a wide variety of cultural and geographical backgrounds from Australia to Mexico, from Thailand to Italy and from Israel to Finland. This enables access to cultural references and to a wide perspective of societal issues in both research and design proposals. Founded in 2014, Fictional Collective grew from the Master departments of Design Academy Eindhoven.
Fictional Collective is a network of designers, researchers, writers and curators producing and sharing knowledge. The network functions as a decentralized institution with a decentralized, project-based model of funding. As an institution, it is a space for collaboration and mediation. Removed from geographical boundaries, Fictional Collective comes together in virtual spaces – Google Docs, Slack, Skype, Facebook, and Fictional Journal. It is a group for dialogue, debate, respect, learning and sharing internally and externally.
Since Fictional Collective doesn’t have a physical space and its working spaces are virtual, the collective’s online presence is crucial. One of the most important phases in the development process of the network in the next months is to develop the collective’s online presence through a Fictional Collective online platform.
Bron van Doen
Bron van Doen is an effort from three DAE alumni - Ron Krielen, Minsung Wang and Conor Trawinski - who graduated between 2013- 2014, dedicated to making social innovation accessible for people in Eindhoven by means of creativity, co-design and collaboration.
Currently we are at a crucial moment: professionalizing current projects, making our practice sustainable by establishing Bron van Doen and starting two new social design projects that are beneficial to distinctive communities in Eindhoven. For this we ask the help of Keep an Eye Design Talent Grant. While we are dedicated to social innovation in Eindhoven, we truly believe that the values we are creating are international as well - being an international collaboration between a Dutchman, a Korean and an Irishman based in Eindhoven. We notice that the further we develop ourselves, the more we want to share our practice and methods in different cities and countries all around the world.