Studio Nienke Hoogvliet is a design studio for material research, experimental and conceptual design. They use design as a tool to shape holistic perspectives.
The studio is founded by Nienke Hoogvliet (1989). She graduated from Lifestyle & Design at the Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam.
The studio engages in freelance projects for different companies and institutions but also continues research in self-initiated design projects. The studio is based in The Hague, The Netherlands.
Since the studio was founded in 2013 they have a main focus on materials that can contribute to a more holistic world. The projects raise awareness of social and environmental problems in the textile, leather and food industry. By creating innovative alternatives they hope to change perspectives and systems.
The project RE-SEA ME is the continuation of SEA ME. To show the duality between plastic waste in the oceans and the sustainable materials the oceans have to offer, Nienke continued her search for materials out of the sea. She discovered that fish skins are a waste product of the fishing industry, while you can also make them into beautiful leather.
She went to fish shops to collect their waste and discovered a way of tanning the skins without any chemicals. By using an old technique, that requires a lot of manual labour, she created a strong, sustainable, and beautiful material that can be used like regular leather. To show the abilities of the leather, Nienke designed a small stool with fish leather seating. To continue the SEA ME collection, she also designed a conceptual rug where the fish leather is sewn into a discarded fishing net.
For this project Nienke used salmon skins, but almost any kind of fish can be used to make leather. While the tanning process was done by hand now, she believes it also has the potential to be produced at a larger scale.
The Dutch Water Authorities are recovering valuable energy and raw materials from wastewater. One of those raw materials is used toilet paper. Recently the Water Authorities Aa & Maas and Hoogheemraadschap Hollands Noorderkwartier installed fine sieve installations, with which they can reclaim used toilet paper (cellulose). To celebrate this sustainable innovation, they invited Studio Nienke Hoogvliet to design products with this material. Every year 180.000 tons of toilet paper is flushed down the toilets of the Netherlands. This means 180.000 trees! Before the installation of the fine sieves, this material was burned. Using this cellulose again, not only means that we need to cut down fewer trees, it makes the process of cleaning the water require less energy as well.
Studio Nienke Hoogvliet made a collection of objects, consisting of a big table, lighting, and decorative bowls to show how this material can be integrated into our homes. The goal of the project is to create a positive association with this material. Therefore the cleaned pulp was made into unique, handmade products and combined with brass to show that something from the sewer can have great value again.
Besides cellulose, the Water Authorities can also reclaim energy, phosphates and other materials from wastewater. To show all the possibilities, the tables consist of eight drawers. Every drawer highlights a material.
For more information: www.efgf.nl
Our body is a trash bin. During our lifetime, we collect waste substances in our body that we can neither use, nor process further. Due to this, our remains can become a threat to our environment. Ash scattering fields and graveyards struggle with soil and groundwater pollution. The number of nutrients and toxins are rising due to the high amount of ash scatterings and burials that happen in a relatively small area. The problem mostly arises when ashes are scattered, the substances are immediately available for the soil to use. To reduce the negative impact of toxins and nutrients, the release should be regulated.
The Dutch Water authorities (united in the ‘Energy and Raw Materials Factory’) can reclaim a new sustainable material from wastewater – a bioplastic called PHA (Poly Hydroxy Alkanoate). This material is similar to regular plastic but completely dissolves in nature. Small organisms in the soil can feed on PHA, which makes the process of biodegradability similar to that of wood.
Studio Nienke Hoogvliet introduces a new type of urn. In the project ‘MOURN’ they redefine the concept of an urn as a storage device for cremation ashes. It’s no longer a vessel. By mixing PHA with cremation ashes, an object is formed that can be given back to nature as a whole. This way, the release of nutrients and toxins in the ashes can be regulated. Because not every type of soil has the same needs, we have distinguished three types of soil: over-fertilized soil, rich soil, and poor soil. The urn has three distinct types of shapes depending on the compactness, type, and quality of the soil. This way, soil can process the substances at its own pace. MOURN impacts local flora and fauna as little as possible. It prevents soil and groundwater pollution. You can give yourself or your loved one back to nature in a responsible way.