Discover Benelux | Brabant | The Perfect Winter Break Ketelhuisplein. Photo: Cleo Goossens
Cor Unum Ceramics.
TextielMuseum Switch expo. Photo: Josefina Eikenaar/TextielMuseum
Brabant, the Dutch Design hotspot TEXT: THESSA LAGEMAN | PHOTOS: PROVINCIE NOORD-BRABANT
For a different experience of the Netherlands, head to Brabant in the south. Cities and museums in Brabant have joined forces to give you a unique glimpse into the world of Dutch Design in 2017. Brabant, officially Noord-Brabant, is one of the 12 Dutch provinces and is located in the south of the country, close to the border with Belgium. Here you will find cute historical inner cities, picturesque villages and beautiful countryside. “Like other destinations, we have everything for visitors here. But what makes our region really outstanding is the fact that we have such a fascinating design culture,” says Frank van den Eijnden, manager at Visit Brabant and director of Van Gogh Brabant. Eindhoven, the largest city in the region, is known as the capital of Dutch design due to the Design Academy Eindhoven and the famous Dutch Design Week event, which takes place in October and attracts 30 | Issue 37 | January 2017
more than 300,000 visitors. “Our designers are remarkably future oriented,” Van den Eijnden continues. 2017 marks the 100-year anniversary of the foundation of De Stijl, the Dutch art movement counting painter Piet Mondriaan as one of its most famous members. “De Stijl’s drive for innovation has been continued in the past 25 years under the name Dutch Design,” Van den Eijnden explains. “Therefore, cities and museums in Brabant have joined forces to give you a unique glimpse into the world of Dutch Design in 2017, under the national theme ‘From Mondrian to Dutch Design’.” For example, you can visit several extraordinary exhibitions at the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, the Museum De Pont and the Textile Museum in Tilburg, and the Noordbrabants Museum in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Typically in Brabant, one does not only visit the many quality art museums, but can also experience the
designs and art first hand, for example in the many ‘design labs’, where you can see artists at work and discover tomorrow’s creations. You can take a look behind the scenes in the designer’s studios and see how young talents are shaping the world. Interesting examples are Cor Unum Ceramics in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, TextielLab in Tilburg and Piet Hein Eek in Eindhoven, which is not only an art studio, but also a museum, shop and restaurant. www.visitbrabant.com