The studio, founded in 2007 by Lonneke Gordijn and Ralph Nauta, is currently housed in the north of Amsterdam. Originally, the duo started in Eindhoven after their graduation from the Dutch Design Academy in 2005. Left from their past in the Brainport region, is their technological approach through which they ‘manifest the phenomena and hidden properties of nature’ . At this point, the team consists of 64 hardworking members, under which artists, engineers, sales and production specialists create the projects and make them known to the world. These projects are characterized by their interactive nature, often moving through complex mechanisms, or lit remarkably with organic patterns. All perfectly fitting with their proclaimed title of ‘future choreographers’. Their work has been displayed across the world in numerous exhibitions and galleries and next to that gained much attention in the media after their solo exhibition in the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam 2019.
DRIFT has therefore become relatively well known at our department of Industrial Design. Their kinetic artworks, that are designed and prototyped on high fidelity has been examples for many. Next to that, is the relatively new view on aesthetics: that of Intelligence. The works made by drift are namely portraying forms of behaviour, all programmed and envisioned in their design process and therefore very interesting as case study.
The project I worked on is called ‘Coded Coincidence’. It’s creative vision is based on the movement of elm seeds. These seeds are a yearly and well-known phenomena in the Netherlands, as they flood the streets with their white appearance, creating the so called ‘Spring snow’. Not only their appearance, but also their movement by the wind is familiar to many. Their dance across the streets seems to be guided by coincidences, but creates the perfect challenge for an art piece.
While working on the development of this art piece, I got to work a lot on my technical skills. Tasks such as CAD-modeling and making technical drawings to communicate with stakeholders were things I improved upon greatly. Unfortunately, this project was done under NDA, which means I cannot tell you more about what I have done during these 5 amazing months at the studio. During this time, I improved on a lot of hard and softs skills. My general identity also became more framed towards a creative problem solver, with a technical background. This was due to role in the project, where I was in contact with a lot of experts to steer the process to its execution. Finally, I have created greater awareness of levels of quality. I was amazed by the bar that was set in the studio, which adjusted my idea of the balance between quality and quantity.
Here is however, an old video of a previous version of this installation: