What's in it for my Mother? (DDW)

This is part two of a series of articles written for Dutch Design Week 2023 as part of their Creative Voices initiative. The series is titled Design Realism: Irrelevant Facts. The articles respond to two themes set by DDW: the “narrative” of Speculative and Social Design and the “mission” of Creating our Living Environment. 
What’s in it for my Mother? Is a journalistic article about goings on at Dutch Design Week 2023. It features a critical review of the Nieuwe Instituut‘s exhibition New Store at Residency for the People, a conversational interview with Lucas Massen over three boozy evenings as well as commentary on the Design Academy Eindhoven’s grad show and an unforgettable performance of TIMELESSTIME by Maison the Faux.

This  installment follows The Ineptitude of the Interpretation which presented design realism as a clumsy but sympathetic voice that should be (over) heard well. Read the full article on DesignDigger, the journalistic platform for Dutch Design: English verion, Dutch version.

Photographs by Nick Deakin.

“It's 7 am the next day. Through an aperture the size of a beer bottle cap I’m squinting at a litter of memories from last-night’s conversational swill. I’m getting nowhere with it. Mud-minded, I head back to Lucas’ in the pissing rain with scraps of penned notes in my pocket.”

“...there is a seemingly endless carousel of carefully presented samples of grass, hay, sand, mud, mycelium, etc. accompanied by the various technical models and mockups that show what the materials could (speculatively) be synthesised into. These are hard-boiled abstractions often made to simplify enormous issues like climate change, global warming, depletion of resources, local sustainable crafts, and so on. It is important work but after a while it is deadening; we start mistaking the map, as it were, for the territory. Compare this to TIMELESSTIME, the utterly disturbing performance by Maison the Faux. The mud, the sand, the hay is not sealed in petri dishes, it is being kicked by stiletto heels and flung from leather corsets, it is writhed in and thumped against.”