Contemporary Use of Crafts – 6 projects selected

Six proposals for collaboration projects between artisans and designers were selected in the second round of Open Call Contemporary Use of Crafts. Coordinator Eva Roolker reflects on the open call.

28 June 2020

With this open call the fund provides designers with an opportunity to submit a proposal to strengthen equal collaborative partnerships between artisans and designers that could lead to a sustainable future for the craft. We asked the applicants to submit a project plan for explorations, new uses and/or applications of traditional and contemporary crafts. The project can take on many different forms, such as experiments in materials and technique, design/artistic research or a special collaboration in a workshop or lab. The fund was particularly interested in projects featuring sustainability or circularity.


The following collaboration projects were selected:
The WildGlas Factory – Atelier NL, Gert Bullée and Nationaal Glasmuseum Leerdam
Bionic Lace – Studio Samira Boon, Margreeth Heijs and Touwslagerij Steenbergen
Magliatheek – Survival of the Fashionest and De Amsterdamse Steek
Bouwtuin – Circular Community Foundation
etain – Thomas Eyck, Aldo Bakker and 't Oude Ambacht
Indian embroideries and 18th century Dutch heirlooms – Karim Adduchi, Meghib and Meriya and Lipika Bansal (TextielFactorij)

Three knitted patches next to several balls of wool in different colors
Survival of the Fashionest and De Amsterdamse Steek – Magliatheek

general impression

The fund received a lot of high quality applications from designers and studios in response to the open call. Virtually all of the applications were submitted by professional and exemplary practices with impressive track records. Although the call was interdisciplinary and open to designers from all design disciplines, a remarkable number of applications were received from an object design discipline. The applications were predominantly focused on glass, ceramics and various textile crafts. Very few projects were interdisciplinary. There was also limited attention for the use of (digital) technology to study the contemporary use of crafts.

Sustainability or circularity plays a role in three of the selected proposals. Atelier NL continues to build on an existing partnership and looks at how local 'wild' sand can be used for glass production and how the conventional production process can be made more sustainable by using local raw materials. In Bouwtuin the Circular Community Foundation is developing a circular material and craft strategy on a regional scale to show what can be done architecturally with natural building materials. In Bionic Lace, Studio Samira Boon investigates the potential use of lace structures in architectural applications for the purpose of climate control.


The open call was organised together with the Mondriaan Fonds; visual artists could submit an application to the Mondriaan Fonds. Given this partnership, the applications were assessed by advisors from both funds. At a joint meeting under the chairmanship of Barbara Visser, the applications were reviewed by Job Meihuizen and Désiree Hammen on behalf of the Creative Industries Fund and by Luuk Nouwen and Antonio Guzman on behalf of the Mondriaan Fonds. The Committee checked whether the submitted proposals met the criteria of this open call and evaluated to what extent the proposals were consistent and whether they fulfil the objectives of the call and grant programme.

View the selection here.


In response to the Open Call Contemporary Use of Crafts, the Creative Industries Fund accepted 54 applications for consideration. This far exceeded the number of applications received during the first round. There were also many more applications than could possibly be funded by the available budget of € 145,000. The 6 approved proposals represent an acceptance rate of 11 per cent.