Since Monday, seven graphic designers have taken over a studio in Rotterdam as part of the Wereld van de Witte de With festival to make prints using only traditional techniques – as the festival website puts it the space is: “filled with everything that makes designers drool: paint, ink, lots of paper and a real mimeograph.” The group has been documenting the process on their website and from tomorrow the public will be able to see just what Bas Koopmans, Matteo Venet, Timon van der Hijden, Koen Taselaar, Freshco, Yorit Kluitman and Jaron Korvinus have been up to. We dragged Bas out of the studio to answer a couple of questions.
Hi Bas. Tell us about the Letterproeftuin project? How did it come about?
Letterproeftuin is an initiative by Jaron, Yorrit and Timon. They started it a year ago and this is the second edition. The idea is that they invite a couple of designers to work in a project space for a week, exploring self-made printing techniques. After a week of experiments, the space is filled with all the work that is made during the week.
What have you learned during the week so far?
Haha, I guess the biggest thing we’ve learned this week is that printing 2,500 copies of a multiple colour 36 page booklet on a Riso stencil copier, is a hell of a job!
Besides that I guess what we all noticed is that when you go into a week like this blankly, with no ideas, with every step you take you get a tonne of new ideas. There is a constant back and forth of idea’s upon ideas. It’s a nice interactive vibe going on. Oh and yes – using copy-machine ink for manual printing makes your hands turn black for at least a week!
How is the creative scene in The Netherlands at the moment?
I guess the scene is great. A lot of people are effected by the whole financial crash, or whining about it so they can ignore the payment deadline. But I guess thats also a good option for new initiatives.