Under the Clouds. João Ribas. Serralves

Posted in Exhibition catalogue, history, writing on September 23rd, 2015
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Under the Clouds: from Paranoia to the Digital Sublime

Since the second half of the twentieth century, we have lived under the shadow of two clouds: the mushroom cloud of the atomic bomb, and now the ‹cloud› of information networks. How did the symbol of post-war paranoia become the utopian metaphor for today’s interconnected world? Under the Clouds confronts the interrelated effects and affects of these two clouds on life and work, leisure and love, and on images, bodies and minds, through contributions from an intergenerational group of artists.

Texts by
Enrico Baj & Sergio Dangelo, Thomas Hirschhorn, Sean Landers, Metahaven, Seth Price, João Ribas, Frances Stark, Hito Steyerl, Stan VanDerBeek


Buy it

Contemporary Art and Its Commerical Markets: A Report on Current Conditions and Future Scenarios. Sternberg Press.

Posted in writing on January 25th, 2012
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Contemporary Art and Its Commerical Markets:
A Report on Current Conditions and Future Scenarios

Contributions by Stefano Baia Curioni, Karen van den Berg/Ursula Pasero, Isabelle Graw, Goldin+Senneby, Noah Horowitz, Suhail Malik/Andrea Phillips, Alain Quemin, Olav Velthuis

Contemporary Art and Its Commercial Markets: A Report on Current Conditions and Future Scenarios maps and analyzes the complex and contested entanglements of contemporary art and its commercial markets. Contemporary art as an asset category and celebrity accessory, the rise of the art fair, and the increased competition of auction houses are among the phenomena which are discussed by academics, theoreticians, and artists. While some of the contributions show how the market’s globalization, and commercialization both reflect and propel the way art is produced, presented, and perceived, others downplay the impact of these developments and argue that the market’s structure has essentially remained the same. All the essays trigger the question: What will art look like in 2022, and how will artists operate?

Contemporary Art and Its Commercial Markets is published as part of the curated project Abstract Possible: The Stockholm Synergies, taking place at Tensta konsthall, the Center for Fashion Studies at Stockholm University, and the auction house Bukowskis—all located in Stockholm—at the beginning of 2012.

This is the first publication in an ongoing series co-published by Sternberg Press and Tensta konsthall.

Design by Metahaven

D 19 €


1:1:1 #03 – Metahaven : Niessen & de Vries : Drukkerij Mart.Spruijt

Posted in graphic design on August 4th, 2011
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1:1:1 #03 – Metahaven : Niessen & de Vries : Drukkerij Mart.Spruijt

1:1:1 is a series of publications in which printing matter converges with the subject matter, the image with the text, the reproduction with the original and the designer and the printer with the client. An artist, designer or musician is the point of departure for each of the numbers in this series, and the subject of conversation is the basis for investigating graphic design and printing as a form of expression.

Richard Niessen and Esther de Vries form together an Amsterdam-based graphic design studio. They work for a wide range of clients in the cultural sector such as museums, artists and publishers. They also initiate exhibitions, books, lectures and workshops.1:1:1 is their initiative.

Metahaven is a group of graphic designers that uses a research-based, speculative ‘meta-design’ practice to rethink the structural parameters and channels through which emerging organizational models and political paradigms inadvertently stumble upon a form of communication. From research projects the group has moved into installation making and speculative design projects Metahaven also produces commissioned work for clients.

Drukkerij Mart.Spruijt bv is an independent, medium sized printing company established in Amsterdam. The company is renowned for quality, its outstanding solution oriented service and creativeness.

This issue was produced as follows: a 4 colour printrun using for each plate the split fountain technique (putting more than one ink in a printing fountain to achieve special colour effects).

D 7.50€


Pre Specifics: Access X!

Posted in graphic design, writing on November 25th, 2010
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Onomatopee 52: Research project
Pre-specifics: access x!
Get access to the “X” imposed by designed culture!

Not only humankind might have an “X” Factor; an environment or a product may equally have one. If a person has an “X” Factor, his power increases. Similarly, as soon as an environment or a product has an “X” Factor, it gains control over us… Let’s make this production more accesible!

PRE-SPECIFICS: ACCESS X! not only showcases luring products, spaces and concepts by contemporary artists, designers, architects and others, but actually also provides insight into their strategies. The exhibition thus features both sensory works and accountable strategies and motivations. The accompanying publication offers further notions into designed culture’s X: its productive conditions and modes of mediation.

Over recent years, ‘Design’ has progressed into a collective term for various activities of research, conceptualisation, production and even criticality. As ‘Design’ became synonymous to widespread professional authority, ‘Design’ became the name for physically imposed control and personally imposed power at large: from the spatial design of McDonald’s to the branding of the new hybrid car, from the executive stance of the spin doctor to the services of the shrink and beyond. Li Edelkoort, design guru and former director of the Design Academy, even expressed a demand for the designer-politician…. The research project PRE-SPECIFICS: ACCESS X! offers you both a rich scope of forms of “X” as an instrumental toolbox to engage the “X” in our designed culture, offering ACCESS to X!

Onomatopee commissioned a variety of proposals, first of all to map out to what extent the addressed ‘design’ practice touches upon conditions of such a type of production and, second, to situate X in practice by means of a newly produced work. The proposals have been exhibited at Röda Sten Kulturforening Göteborg. From these proposals, Onomatopee has selected the majority to be actualised at Onomatopee Eindhoven during the Dutch Design Week.

Contributors: Platform for Pedagogy (US), Uglycute (SE), Olaf Nicolai (DE), Dexter Sinister (US), Joana Meroz / Andrea Bandoni / Saron Paz (NL), Unfold (BE), Metahaven (NL), Lust (NL), Claire Fontaine (FR), Société Réaliste (FR), Ryan Gander / Abake (UK), Dave Hullfish Bailey (US) Florian Conradi / Michelle Christensen (DE).

Curators: Freek Lomme (NL) & Michael Capio (US)
Exhibition design: Dave Keune (NL)
Graphic design publication: Eric de Haas (NL)

D 15€

Buy: orders@mottodistribution

Uncorporate Identity, Metahaven

Posted in graphic design, Motto Berlin store on July 16th, 2010


Uncorporate Identity by Metahaven

An adventurous collection of design projects around visual identity and politics which presents the visual projects and writings of design studio Metahaven, along with a host of contributing writers

Published by Lars Müller Publishers.

Out Of Print

Motto Storefront events update. Vancouver

Posted in Events on July 1st, 2010
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Motto Storefront events update.

Metahaven Talk: Saturday, July 3rd, 2pm

Metahaven (Vinca Kruk, Daniel van der Velden) is a design studio engaging the field of visual identity. From research projects, such as the Sealand Identity Project (2004), Museum of Conflict (2006), and Quaero (2007), the group has moved into installations and critical design projects such as Affiche Frontière (CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux, 2008) and Stadtstaat (Künstlerhaus Stuttgart and Casco Utrecht). Its recent book, Uncorporate Identity (Lars Müller Publishers, 2010), matches design with inquiries on globalization and network society. Metahaven’s work was included in group exhibitions like Forms of Inquiry (Architectural Association, London, 2007, cat.) and On Purpose – Design Concepts (Arnolfini, Bristol, 2008). Upcoming projects include a contribution to Manifesta 8 in Murcia, Spain (opening October 2010) and to Graphic Design Worlds at Triennale Design Museum in Milan (2011). Metahaven’s commissioners include the Van Abbemuseum, Valiz Publishers, e-flux Journal, Premsela Foundation and Bureau Europa. Metahaven lectures regularly, and teaches at Yale University, New Haven, the Design Academy, Eindhoven, and the Sandberg Institute, Amsterdam.

Working Format Talk: Saturday, July 10, 2pm
Working Format is a graphic design studio founded by Ross Milne, Grace Partridge and Abi Huynh, and based in Vancouver, Canada. Working Format exhibits a project-specific working process that has produced a diverse body of work that includes type design, signage, identity and printed matter. The studio has received numerous distinctions including recognition from The Best Dutch Books, Graphex 2008 and 2010, Coupe, Alcuin Society and Salazar awards.

Upcoming Events
July 17: Ooga Booga talk at 2pm


233 Carrall Street
Vancouver, BC
V6B 2J2 Canada
Tel. 604.688.0051
Fax 604.685.1912
Tuesday – Saturday, 12-5pm