by Miryam Muller in , ,

Carmela Bogman and Rogier Martens of The Netherlands have come up with a new interactive street furniture design.

By utilizing a hydraulic system, the Pop-Up’s can be pumped out of the pavement by the inhabitants. After use it can be sunk back and it will disappear into the pavement. There are three retractable pieces that come up to function as a lounge area, eating spot or meeting place, or just lower them all down to be flush with the cement to keep the flow of traffic moving.

In Lombok, a district of Utrecht, the Netherlands, the first pop-up lounge already has been placed and after this initial testing phase, the concept might be introduced into several other communities .

Pop-Up Street Furniture



by Miryam Muller in ,

Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman is famous for extraordinary large-scale sculptures that he usually creates with a healthy amount of humour. This time, he undertakes to enlarge a typical pictogram of an industrial zone and turn it into a three-dimensional habitable structure. Titled Little Factory, this object is situated right in a developing industrial zone in Drachten, Netherlands.

As the author describes, this work aims to criticize the architecture of business parks and the way they use their sites. However, the most distinguishing feature of this art object is a visual effect and element of humour that it adds to the urban environment. Wrapped in black corrugated steel roof sheets, this 5 x 12 x 14 metres building is not only an art object; the author suggest using it as a studio for an artist. We only add that it would be great if the building housed some small manufacture one day to make the image complete and for the best correlation with the name.

Little Factory by Florentijn Hofman


Little Factory by Florentijn Hofman

Little Factory by Florentijn Hofman

Little Factory by Florentijn Hofman

Little Factory by Florentijn Hofman



by Miryam Muller in , , ,

I love me some Starbucks. Chances even are that, along with many others who have fallen for the super consistent, cozy homey décor, burnt-coffee smell and the $4 latte, you can find me visiting the chain to grab a drink, to work or simply hang out with my friends every other day and in any other city I find myself in. If Starbucks has done anything, it has shown me how the ability of a brand can transform your day, and for that matter, your life.

Before Starbucks and I became best buddies, I used to find comfort in a cup of tea or coffee at the corner deli from where I used to live in New York: it was easy, there were no changes and no surprises. It was sustainable and utilitarian. It did its job. Then came Starbucks, that great paper cup of coffee that came in three different sizes, a huge range of flavors that could accommodate any mood, and that was available any time of day. What a concept! It was a cup of coffee that came with great music, free Wi-Fi, and the opportunity to support worthy causes. Who wanted the old beat-up cup of coffee anymore? A cup of Starbucks coffee gave comfort and status.

Yet Starbucks also is a company full of contradictions. On one hand, Starbucks leadership is passionate about improving the lives of tens of thousands of workers and shrinking their global carbon footprint. But on the other hand, the corporation has turned the latte into a fast food commodity that isn’t only bad for our waistlines and wallets, but has made it nearly impossible for smaller independent coffee shops to compete.

Insurance Quotes’ latest Hidden Costs video evaluates the global impact of Starbucks on our health, our environment and our economy. So what’s the grade? A respectable “B”. It turns out that the company’s forward looking leadership is truly making the company a healthier presence in the world.

Right now, you’re probably sitting within a mile of six Starbucks where you can blow $6 on a 780 calorie mocha. And maybe this video has gotten you hankering for one. So treat yourself. Chances are that mocha will be ground from fair trade espresso beans by a barista with company-provided health benefits.

The end result is that Starbucks does an extremely good job of providing coffee not only for the U.S., but worldwide, even if you may not necessarily dig their oft-burnt coffee, everyone surely loves a cozy environment and free Wi-Fi.


Oldest Starbucks Cafe


by Miryam Muller in , ,

Blastfurnace, the new exhibition from Dutch artist and designer Joep Van Lieshout is “an escape from design.”

The exhibition, staged at London’s Carpenters Workshop Gallery, brings together three recent works in bronze as part of Van Lieshout’s New Tribal Labyrinth series.

Van Lieshout, who founded his Rotterdam-based studio in 1995, combines industry and art to convey messages about equilibrium and anti-consumerism. The exhibition is, he says, “an escape from design, a hate and love towards design.” The artist, known for his large-scale sexual sculptures, has previously produced furniture for the Dutch brand Lensvelt, as well as collaborating on architectural projects with studios such as MVRDV.

Blastfurnace, a three-level bronze structure, depicts all the elements in a steel factory, including the furnace, water wheel and bellows pumping air into the lower section of the blast furnace.

The work, Van Lieshout says, “is an extreme contradiction of form follows function. I am not looking for the most functional coffee table or shelving unit; this is not important in the design process. It’s actually the opposite.

“I ask myself the question how can you make a piece of furniture that is very dysfunctional. You can maybe put your car keys and cigarettes on the table, but that’s it”.

Now, Van Lieshout plans to add a new dimension to his work. “I want to reinvent the industrial revolution by making a blast furnace, sawmills, machine factories, textile factories on a real scale.”

The studio is working on reproducing its blast furnace model as a life-size scale blast furnace: ten metres in height and with the function to produce real steel. It plans to exhibit in Zurich and Marseille next summer.

Blastfurnace by Atelier Van Lieshout

Blastfurnace by Atelier Van Lieshout


by Miryam Muller in , ,

The Netherlands-based architectural practices Bureau SLA and Overtreders W have together designed the ‘Noorderparkbar’. It is a coffee bar and local gathering space built for people in North Amsterdam. The pavilion looks brand new but actually it was completely constructed out of second hand materials brought from marktplaats.nl, the Dutch eBay.

Following is a description from the designers, “The construction of the bar consists of 3 temporary hospital units. One of the units was given new facades made entirely of old windows and a roof of old skylights, this unit contains a bar and toilets. The other units surround the terrace. The whole pavilion can be closed with large shutters.

Our first purchase was a second hand van, to collect the materials from all over Holland. After that we bought the hospital units, 42 windows, a few thousands meters of wood, 55 liters of paint, two toilet bowls and a lot more.”


by Johanna Bilitza in , , , , ,

The French creative duo "Super Groupe" was founded by two graphic design/textile students in Paris. They are mixing up photography, video, illustration and textures to create colorful and positive identities. They will inaugurate the exhibition "House of 100 hands" the 8th of June 2012 in the "Vlaams Cultuurhuis De Brakke Grond" (Nes 45, NL-1012KD Amsterdam) with one of their performances. The exposition unites international artists and designers working with different textures and special materials.

I really like their project "Bande de mutants". Two or more people create big, colored fantasy characters by wearing costumes with a big eye or mouth on them or crazy blue wigs that were prefabricated by the artists.

Check out the website http://www.supergroupe.fr/index.php to discover more abstract universes in image and video!

THE VIDEO Bande de Mutants



by Johanna Bilitza in

We hope you all enjoyed Queen's day! There was a nice place for everybody to celebrate. In the Vondelpark, kids were selling home made cakes, old toys or clothes and playing instruments. The town canals were full of boats with people dancing to music. In the streets, nice fresh food and drinks were sold. The cafés and the gardens offered places in the sun, everywhere was orange. What a nice and sunny day. I personally enjoyed the happiness of the people.


by Miryam Muller in , ,

Starbucks, the brand that normalized the $4 latte is opening an experimental concept store in Amsterdam that offers a glimpse of the Starbucks of the future—at least in Europe.

Located in the former vault of a historic bank on Rembrandtplein, the new shop will be a showcase for sustainable interior design and slow coffee brewing, with small-batch reserves coffees and Europe’s first-ever Clover, a high-end machine that brews one cup at a time. But the most radical departure is in the aesthetic: the multilevel space awash in recycled and local materials: walls are lined with antique Delft tiles, bicycle inner tubes, and wooden gingerbread molds; repurposed Dutch oak was used to make benches, tables, and the undulating ceiling relief consisting of 1,876 pieces of individually sawn blocks. The Dutch-born Liz Muller, Starbucks concept design director, commissioned more than 35 artists and craftsmen to add their quirky touches to the 4,500-square-foot space.

The designers took great care to retain some of the building’s original details, such as the 1920s marble floor and the vault’s exposed concrete. But while the design respects the bank’s architectural history, the store’s overall look approaches that of a theater, with the baristas visible from every vantage point of the multi-tiered spaces (which also cameo as stages for local bands, poetry readings, and other cultural events). The coffeehouse will also use social media to communicate relevant moments throughout the day—for example, by sending out a tweet when warm cookies roll of its in-house bakery.

The concepts that go over well in Amsterdam will find their way to other stores across Europe. They may even filter into the highly individualized local concept stores that Starbucks has been stealthily opening in the United States, including one made from shipping containers outside of Seattle.

More information here.



by Miryam Muller in , ,

For her series titled "Broken Butterflies" artist Anne ten Donkelaar repaired the damaged wings of real butterflies using gold, old maps, roots, threads and embroidery. An artist who is inspired by natural forms and structures, Donkelaar uses found objects and materials combined with intricate design details to create stunning pieces of art.

Find out more about Anne's work here.

Thanks Present&Correct for the link!


by Miryam Muller in , , , , ,

If you find yourself on Amsterdam’s busiest shopping street – Kalverstraat – try the new Levi’s store.

The store is now open, combining the brand’s signature craftsmanship and authenticity with color and reclaimed materials, making it a vibrant and youthful shopping destination for locals and visitors.

The store makes great use of recycled and locally sourced materials. In fact, the majority of the store’s interior has been crafted using reclaimed items. The Levi's team is aiming to build sustainability into everything they do – not just in their product, but their stores, as well.

Of course, the new Kalverstraat store is a great shopping destination where you’ll find iconic denim and classic, cool American styles.

In addition to denim products, the new store will also host cultural events – readings, exhibitions and performances by local artists and pioneers.

Amsterdam is on the rise of becoming one of Europe's leading denim cities, check out more denim store's in Holland:

Denham the jeansmaker, Tenue de Nîmes, Men at Work, Kuyichi

Levi's official website.


by Miryam Muller in ,

Layar and LINDA, the largest women’s glossy in the Netherlands, are showcasing the future of print by creating the first Dutch augmented reality magazine. As a result, the new LINDA magazine comes with so called “digital buttons” that are placed on more than 50 pages, allowing Layar users to access additional content with their smartphones. In total, there are 120 digital buttons placed throughout the magazine, linking to specific websites, videos, apps and phone numbers.

Read the complete story at intoMobile