WE MAKE CARPETS, consisting of Marcia Nolte, Stijn van der Vleuten and Bob Waardenburg, mix traditional skills and a critical view of the consumer society in unusual carpets.
We all know carpets. The word is derived from the Persian ‘tafta’ and literally means woven. Weaving carpets is a centuries-old tradition, which flourished in (Flemish) Brabant in the 13th century. Throughout the centuries, the carpet industry was leading in designing graphic patterns. The decorative carpets were, in this way, at the cradle of what we now call applied art. Owning this labour-intensive product was associated with wealth, prestige and power. The acoustic and insulating function often came in second place.
In line with the recent revaluation of the craft (in combination with present-day techniques), WE MAKE CARPETS makes a contemporary interpretation of this centuries-old medium. The weaving method, use of materials and patterns reflect the 21st century. At a distance, we simply see a decorative carpet. Closer inspection will, however, surprise us. WE MAKE CARPETS sampled analog everyday items of use into carpets with impressive sizes. Products that normally have no value once they have been used, such as plastic forks, plasters, paving tiles, pasta, cotton balls and pegs are arranged in an inventive way to form a graphic pattern. WE MAKE CARPETS are inspired by the colour, shape and possibilities of the material chosen. The result is not just a decorative carpet, but an object that makes us think about the consumer society that produces these ‘weaving materials’. A contemporary interpretation of wealth.
Dennis Elbers, curator Graphic Design Museum, Breda, The Netherlands