Announcing This happened – Utrecht #6

Last week we announced the sixth edi­tion of This hap­pened – Utrecht. The pro­gram was up on our Dutch site already, here’s the pro­gram in Eng­lish (soon avail­able on our inter­na­tion­al .org site, too). As always I am very excit­ed about the line-up. Can’t wait to hear what sto­ries these peo­ple have to share about their work. Doors open on Mon­day 10 May at 7:30PM. The reg­is­tra­tion starts on Mon­day 26 April at 12:00PM. See you there!

Keez Duyves is one of the cofounders of PIPS:lab, based in Ams­ter­dam, NL. Archie and the Bees, their newest the­atri­cal con­cept, links the pri­ma­ry col­ors red, green and blue to the pri­ma­ry ele­ments of rhythm: kick, snare and hi-hat. In this hybrid of mul­ti­me­dia per­for­mance and instal­la­tion, PIPS:lab demon­strate their rev­o­lu­tion­ary Radar­funk machine — allow­ing them to gen­er­ate sound from col­or. A light paint­ing or the col­ors in the audi­ence serve as musi­cal basis over which PIPS:lab impro­vise and amaze with their oth­er self-devel­oped instru­ments: the Bash­blender, the Grinder and the LCDC video gui­tar.

Matt Cot­tam is the founder of Tel­lart. Wood­en Log­ic rep­re­sents the first phase in a hands-on sketch­ing process aimed at explor­ing how nat­ur­al mate­ri­als and craft tra­di­tions can be brought to the cen­ter of inter­ac­tive dig­i­tal design to give mod­ern prod­ucts greater longevi­ty and mean­ing. It is only in the past decade or so that the com­mu­ni­ty and tools have evolved to the point that design­ers can sketch with hard­ware and soft­ware; which before that was the sole domain of engi­neers and com­put­er sci­en­tists. This project seeks to com­bine seem­ing­ly dis­so­nant ele­ments, nat­ur­al, mate­r­i­al and vir­tu­al, and explore how they can be craft­ed to feel as if they were born togeth­er as parts of a uni­fied object anato­my that is both sin­gu­lar and pre­cious.

San­neke Prins and Berend Weij are co-founders of Mijn naam is Haas, a com­pa­ny that pro­duces a range of edu­ca­tion­al prod­ucts aimed at pri­ma­ry edu­ca­tion. These prod­ucts are all sit­u­at­ed in the world of the main char­ac­ter Haas. The range con­sists of illus­trat­ed children’s books, CD-ROMs and an online learn­ing envi­ron­ment, in which the vocab­u­lary of tod­dlers is increased through game prin­ci­ples. Chil­dren cre­ate the world of haas by draw­ing. All draw­ing actions direct­ly influ­ence the unfold­ing sto­ry, so each play ses­sion is unique which makes the game con­tin­u­ous­ly engag­ing. In this cre­ative process lan­guage ele­ments are pre­sent­ed in a play­ful man­ner. The first ver­sion of the game was cre­at­ed by the founders dur­ing their atten­dance of the EMMA pro­gram at the HKU.

Sebas­ti­aan de With is an inter­face and icon design­er work­ing under the name Cocoia. He designs, teach­es and runs a pop­u­lar blog on inter­faces and icons. Sebas­ti­aan is eas­i­ly rec­og­nized in Dracht­en wear­ing his Explod­ed Set­tings Icon or Bricky shirt and tot­ing an iPad. Clas­sics is one of the first pop­u­lar e-read­ers on the iPhone, offer­ing pub­lic domain books in a well-designed expe­ri­ence. The project was ini­ti­at­ed by the Phill Ryu, (in)famous for MacHeist and his sup­port of the Deli­cious Gen­er­a­tion. Clear­ly the Clas­sics app is a feat of design dri­ven devel­op­ment, com­plete with an inspired wood­en book­shelf, curl­ing page turns (both now also avail­able on the iPad), mar­velous icons and a col­lec­tion of lov­ing­ly designed book cov­ers.

We wouldn’t be able to pull off this edi­tion with the sup­port of the Utrecht School of the Arts and Microsoft Design Tool­box. Thank you!

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Kars Alfrink

Kars is a designer, researcher and educator focused on emerging technologies, social progress and the built environment.