About a week ago, we returned home from our study trip to Amsterdam.
We were lucky enough to visit some really amazing studios which varied from big ad agencies to much smaller business or parternships.
A lot of the most exciting peices of work we were shown by studios had been created for cultral institutions — it’s really cool that there seems to be such a high demand for this kind of work in Amsterdam, and the stuff that comes out of it always seem to be a lot more innovative than the equivelant of what you would see in the UK. We definitily got the impression that these clients were a little more prepared to take risks. Perhaps this has something to do with the same reason the Dutch have a large museum devoted to Graphic Design.
The large glass fronted gallery in Breda, which is about 2 hours South of Amsterdam, houses a permanent collection showcasing 100 years of Dutch Graphic Design, as well as space for temporary exhibitons. Part of the exhibition caption reads,“A systematic and creative approach to complex information became a keystone of graphic design practice”. It was fascinating to see how basic public information such as the telephone book, designed by Wim Crouwel, was given such care and attention and now stands alone as a beautiful peice of design, as well as being a telelphone book.
We also took a quick visit to the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, to have a little look around the building. Many of the professionals we spoke to had graduated from here, and much of the students work always seems to be popping up online. I was pretty jealous of how the workshop spaces that were open to them — having screenprinting and printmaking workshops at their disposal, all lined up along the same corridor as bookbinding and letterpress. The week we visited, the normal timetable wasn’t running, so unfortuntly we didn’t manage to meet any of the students were below are some nice examples or work we spied in the cases.