Pieke Bergmans (1978) is a designer / artist from the Netherlands. Bergmans studied at the Academy of Arts, St. Joost Breda (graphic design). HKA-Art-School Arnhem (3D-Design). Design Academy Eindhoven (Industrial Design). Royal College of Art, London (MA, Design Products).
After her Postgraduate at the Royal College of Art, under Ron Arad, she opened her studio in Amsterdam and started working on a large variety of projects around the globe. For 6 years Bergmans owned an exhibition-space in Milan at Via Tortona, where she held exhibitions on a yearly basis during the Salone del Mobile.
In 2013/2014 Bergmans became ‘designer of the year’ in Brazil.
Bergmans had solo exhibitions in Milan, Paris, London, Tokyo, Miami, Basel and in 2014/2015 a retrospective of her works were to be seen at the Noordbrabants Museum in s’Hertogenbosch.
Bergmans works have been collected and exhibited by museums worldwide, including the Centre Pompidou, Victoria & Albert Museum, Vitra Design Museum, 21_21 Design Sight Tokyo, Design Museum Holon, Boijmans van Beuningen, the Groninger Museum etc. Although, by definition, her work has primarily been geared to collectors, Pieke has collaborated with various like-minded companies as Rosenthal, Comme des Garçons & Vitra.
In recent years, Bergmans made a name for herself with mouth-blown crystal that coagulates into fluid forms. Pieke Bergmans made her international breakthrough with the Light Blubs, a series of crystal lamps that refer to the archetypal incandescent lamp. By literally blowing up the bulb, she confirms the iconic status of this light source. She emphasizes this traditional way of working by fluidly allowing the crystal to find its new form. At the same time, she places her light sculptures in the present by equipping them with LED’s. She places everyday implements in a different, surprising context.”
Her favorite modus operandi is to alter existing production processes to come to new forms and functions.
Pieke’s work is spontaneous, playful and fresh. She aims to combine function, form and message in a single elegant gesture. Whether working with porcelain, plastic or glass, she always creates objects that are of a pure and natural beauty.
Pieke Bergmans is fascinated by movement and the shapes that arise from it. She is amazed at how many materials are squeezed into straitjackets, with no room for the natural characteristics of the material to shine out. Characteristic of Bergmans’ work method is her close study of existing production processes that she then manipulates and reworks. Using this approach she gives the material room to choose its own way.
Bergmans collaborates with technical specialists. Various works are produced in series under her direction. Bergmans intervenes at a certain moment in the production process, so that the still freely moving shape is brought to a stop. Hence every object is unique.
Bergmans has not restricted herself to one sort of material in her repertoire, but works with glass, plastic and other synthetics. All are materials that become soft and malleable by heating during the production process. While cooling they become hard and the process of creeping, twisting and !owing is brought to a halt.
Process and end object are inextricably bound together for Bergmans. As soon as she intervenes there is no way back for the object. Each series evolves due to repetition of the production process. The results can be just as surprising for Bergmans as they are for the viewer.
text by Aziz Bekkauoi (Rotterdam Design Prize 2012) :
”I find Bergmans’s frank curiosity admirable. She moves people with her concept of controlled imperfection. Without regard to trends, she begins with a material and a craft and then performs an intervention on them, almost abruptly, in a seemingly regressive way.
Her evolving way of working, which is unfettered by time. Her clever works seem to have been created in passing, intuitively and on impulse.
In reality, they are the result of keen observation and structured experimentation, synergies of creation and natural selection, brought down to a new essence.
Another vital characteristic of her work is the way it sticks with you. It hangs around, creeps, meanders and flows, not just in space but also in your head. Her work gives the impression of being in motion – that if you look at it again, a split second later, it will have inched closer to you and started to multiply.”
‘ideas worth spreading’
A central theme in Pieke’s work is the virus. It binds the many disciplines and materials she works with.
‘I am a virus’
Pieke’s objects are called viruses, due to their natural forms and the way they come to life. But eventually, the biggest virus of them all is the designer in person. Manipulating standard production processes is by all means viral behavior. In general mass production, a single form is endlessly and perfectly multiplied like a healthy cell. As she allows room for change and serendipity, Pieke aims to create processes in which objects are never completely the same. Like a virus, her works change and adapt to various conditions, disrupting common ideas and the predictable evolution of form and design.
© 2015 Pieke Bergmans / Design Virus | Built by AllWell