Affecting the Surface

This project was in collaboration with the research project "Composing the New Carpet" by the Centre of Expertise Future Makers ArtEZ. Together with four other students I got selected to show our work at the Dutch Design Week 2017.

My project "Affecting the Surface" also got published in Composing the New Carpet | Design research in context (part 19 in: ArtEZ Academia series).

Merel Dassen's work Affecting the Surface combines the carpet with a performative element, which in turn has repercussions on the materiality of the carpet. The origin of her work lies in her fascination with fossils. The layering that arises and the change that occurs in the material over time could make for an interesting experiment in the context of a carpet. But what would happen if humans also gave input into this? Not so much human as designer or creator, but rather human who causes damage in an almost mechanical way: human as machine. After all, damage also gives a certain shape to an object. This idea inspired Dassen to study the importance of movement in the creative process. Why couldn't the designer design a shoe that allows users to make movements that simultaneously determine the shape of the carpet? And if this user were a dancer, who could directly apply a pattern in the carpet tile with a repetitive movement, what is the role of the designer? Dassen therefore decided to design a shoe inspired by the shoes used in modern dance, simple but functional, with sharp edges on the sole that damages the material. The movement of the foot creates the final shape of the carpet. The damage creates new work.

Published in "Compusing the New Carpet | Design Research in Context 
(part 19 in: ArtEZ Academia series)


Merel Dassen 

Product, Experience & Graphic Designer