175 minutes w/ nils rotgans

Category: Project
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Well hello, could you perhaps briefly introduce yourself?

I’m a graduation student interaction design. My focus is to make design with new media and old. Im very interested in information design and interaction design. To combine design and new media to com to a new elegant designs.

How is the whole graduation experience doing it for you?

on the academy we always had a instruction to make a project from. I think we had a lot of freedom but with the last project you could do everything. I thought that was very hard at start. But it is so fantastic to start research project just smal and make it to something big. I have loved the journey the most. Every time an other way to explore. And a totally unexpected end of the project. About the time pressure I think that is very personal, I actually work better with a fast deadline coming up.

Could you tell me something about your research project and what it’s about ?

Well it’s about my dislike on text. And how the dutch politic system and the media around it. Every time there are elections the political parties bring out a book about everything they promise us. That was the start of the project. I’m a person that is very match visual thinker. I don’t like reading a lot. And have a hard time to read every book that the parties give to the public. I wanted to make a visual interface that trimmed every personality and fake promise from the system. A honest image of the dutch politic system. without opinions and promises. Just show what the politic really is doing.

What were some important references for the project?

I had a lot of inspiration in data visualizations from the british and american money streams. And the most of my data i used is calculated by CPB and CBS. That are dutch agencies that keep track of the data what the politic generates.

Does this project to you feel like your mona lisa of projects?

Well, this is my biggest project jet. So in that perspective yes. But it is far from finished i need to find the time, money and energy to make it something real. The part that is now ready is just been researching. It is not reachable for everyone.

Could you tell me a little about your thesis?

Well, it’s could interactive architecture. Its about the media art in public locations. and what the artists do with the fact that more and more of our public space get more cameras and security. The big CCVT spaces that is slowly coming up. We get scanned and put in a archief. we don’t have any control about that and we don’t now about it. With my design i did the same. People that come in to the graduation expo, every one of them i photographed the face. Without their knowledge. after i took the picture i made a “offline” archive. I Printed the faces. My aim was to distribute knowledge from my thesis. So every time a person came in the room he printed his face with the text of my thesis. The person who did’t want his or her face to by in the archief needed to take my thesis.

Where did you do your internship?

At Art+Com a berlin based interactive media studio. They make a lot of installations with new media. i liked them because they work with big project and smal and the design is mostly indoors. it was a great way to learn a lot. A lot of different professions are working there. architects, interaction designers, graphic designers, hackers/developers ect. All to make conceptual work with new media.

Did doing an internship also influence some beliefs you have about design? and how did it change you?

Yes, but i was there for 6 months a lot of time to learn about a lot. I think my work did get a lot more mature. I cant say exactly what changed in my design, it is more the overall look and feel. The thing that did not change was my information design. That was the thing they did not have.

Did they serve avocado’s during lunch?

Ha!? not that i recall. sorry not of the top of my head. its already a year ago.

Next up is the practical assignment, could you tell me a little about that?

Sure!, we worked together with GoShort a short film, film festival in Nijmegen. We were ask to make a new sort of comment system. Like you find on soundcloud, youtube, reddit ect. Well you run fast in problems if you try that. we all know a lot of sh*t get on the internet and we did’t want that. so no text. also there needed to be a way to simple make a commend on a movie. In the and we came up with an idea with drawing a simple line. the hight of the line represented how good you think it was. and the width position with the timeline of the movie. People who went to the festival could do that on there smartphone and on ipads in the main hall, for each movie. In the main hall where also 2 big interactive posters that showed the last commends, best movie until now and stuf like that. On the last day the best movies always get an award. This year every winner of an awards did get the average line from there movie back. we 3d printed that at the last moment for al of the winers. this line was every interesting because you say what part of the movie the public found great and what not so much.

Five years from now, what will you be doing?

I dont know. i want to start same day my own little studio. but i want to work for a nice big studio until than. i want to go back go berlin. but there is no work for my at the time.

Do you have some tips or advice for upcoming graduate or new students?

Listen to this! all day all night https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCy7lLQwToI

i dont realy have any tips. its your own “Journey”.

207 minutes w/ maartje de goede

Category: Project
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Hi! Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Hi! I’m Maartje, I’m 21 and live in Utrecht. I think you can call me a graphic designer even though
I still don’t know what that means. Through my work I try to make the world a nicer place.

So Maartje, how is the whole ‘graduation experience’ doing it
for you?

It’s less stressful than expected! I haven’t even done an allnighter yet and only had the occasional ‘oh my god, what will i do with my future!’–panic attack. It’s fun. And I really like the free printer in our own classroom. Also the plant.

Would you tell us about your research project?

I’ve researched the impacts that our society would suffer if we’d go from being a welfare state to
a participation society, as our current government would like. As a response to the things that would deteriorate, I’ve come up with inventions. They’re products that help people participate in society, Dutch citizens can build them themselves with the manuals I produced. The collection of inventions is shown on a website* and will keep growing with suggestion that people can submit themselves. During the graduation expo I’ll show all the products that have been invented till then.


What were some important influences for the creation of your project the way it’s constructed currently?

I think ArtEZ itself was a big influence. I have never really found my way in graphic design… aaand… the school has shown me that as well. I’m not just that into typography and ‘contemporary design culture’. I’d decided I wanted to make something fun and I didn’t think school was fun last year, so I took a big leap and made my most non–graphic design project ever and that really worked. It’s what I want to do. My internship** has been another big influence, over there I learned how to make art projects real and get the public to participate in them.

** Circus Engelbregt

Does your graduation, to you, feel as like it’s your ‘Mona Lisa’ of work so far?

Nope, very much not the Mona Lisa in terms of aesthetics. It is my most real and accesible work so far though, and since that’s what I aspire I guess you could say it feels like my best project.

Ok, well let’s go to another topic. Could you briefly inform us on the subject of your thesis?

I could! My thesis is about aesthetics in grapheme synesthesia–visualisation, which probably makes most people none the wiser. Grapheme–synesthesia is a condition which I have that makes people read in colour: all digits are connected to a specific colour in the mind of a synesthete. For example, in my mind I see the letter A as a forest green, and the number 3 as orange.

This has helped me a lot with learning languages and could help people that have trouble with reading and learning languages, because it adds another factor to help remember words. People have tried to visualise this experience in both science and art for ages, but it’s never exactly right. In my thesis I look for a way to visualise this form of synesthesia on the border of art and science. The thesis is a source book for typographers who wish to make a coloured typeface that can visualise synesthesia and in that way help people with readingproblems.

So yeah, it has absolutely nothing to do with my research project.

Has your thesis had a certain influence on deciding on the research assignment?if yes, in what way?

It hasn’t had any influence. I briefly thought about making a synesthesia–font as my research assignment but then I remembered that I don’t really like typography and that there are people around that are way better than me at that, that’s why it’s a sourcebook.

To what sense would you like your this project, and the methodology used, to correspond to your practice after graduation?

Oh dear, here come the future–questions, I’ve been trying to avoid them for weeks. I do think about them, there’s just so much I want to do!

I would like to make more projects like this one. I’d like to work together with people who care about the same things as I do, and create things in which people can participate, and projects that get their own life after they’ve been introduced to the world.

Where did you do your internship?

At Circus Engelbregt, former EGBG, the studio of Martijn Engelbregt in Amsterdam.

In what way has the experience of doing an internship changed you, or, your (design) beliefs or (work)habits?

I have learned so much during my internship! It was an amazing experience. I’ve come to realise that a lot is possible if you just act like it’s a normal thing to ask, do or make. I still have the same ‘designbeliefs’ but they’re expanded to the belief that I can do whatever the hell I want if the story’s good enough. Spoken and unspoken design rules are very breakable if you break them consciously.

Also: yoga and holistic worldviews!

Did they serve avocado during lunch?

Hahahaha. Yes, all the time. I’ve come to appreciate avocado very much.It’s the ultimate designerfood.

Onto another one of the projects of graduation: could you inform us on your partner, client and type of assigment for the practical assignment?

I worked together with Vincent Hammingh for the IABR (via Catalogtree), we made a publication about Carbon Added Tax, a great solution for climate change problems.

The corporation went really well, I think we complement eachother well in our work! (Fortunately, Vincent is very good in typography and I in turn can handle lots of data) The assignment went great and smoothly. Besides that, it was about saving the world, or at least the climate, so that’s great anyhow.

We had a lot of fun (Oh! And if I can I’d like to thank Walter from the printing work place here for his patience with all our weird printing technique–wishes).

Five years from now, you’ll be doing what?


Okay… I’ll either be singing in a traveling folkband in Scandinavia, or be chained to a tree somehwere, or be making extremely succesful art projects or I’ll have written ten books and will live in a castle with all my friends and adopted pets and actually I have no clue whatsoever, but I hope I’ll be saving the world in some way.

And last but not least: any tips or advice for upcoming graduate students, or new students?

Run away, run away! Or the all–time favourite: be yourself, or at least try to find out who you are and what you want and don’t let anyone tell you that that’s not enough. And be healthy, sleep and sanity are more important than good grades. If anyone says otherwise: screw ‘em.