The lectures are in English unless stated otherwise. The lecture programme is subject to change.
Sustainable and regenerative building materials
Discover eco-friendly building materials at MaterialDistrict Utrecht’s lecture programme on sustainable and regenerative building materials. Led by Lars van Vianen from Matter Technologies, delve into bioreceptive design and the fusion of built and natural environments.
By: Matter Technologies
3D printing (part 1)
Discover the evolution of 3D printing at MaterialDistrict Utrecht’s lecture programme. Initially focusing on plastics, resins, carbon fibre, and metal, 3D printing now embraces diverse materials including wood, food, clay, and sustainable options like corn or algae-based binders. Despite the promise of material efficiency, scaling up poses challenges.
Moderator: Simone de Waart
10:45 – 11:15
Lars van Vianen, Matter Technologies Bioreceptive Environments. A Biophilic Design Strategies on the Meta-Scale
Lars van Vianen is a meta-designer and founding director of Scape Agency. Proceeding from a background in interactive art, experience design and parametric architecture, he explores the convergence of synthetic biology, materials science, artificial intelligence, and robotic construction. He launched Scape Agency in 2020. Scape Agency is a spatial innovation collective that dreams, discovers and designs the everyday of tomorrow. This lecture will cover the integration of living systems into architectural practices, fostering spaces that are not only conducive to human well-being but also actively engage with biological entities.
11:00 – 11:30
Wies van den Maagdenberg, StudioWies The Material Identity Crisis (NL)
Wies van den Maagdenberg, 26 years old, is a material/product designer and recently graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven. Her passion for materials started as a child, where she started making fantasy animals with waste, which evolved into functional products on Sitlucas. From cow intestines to ceramics, her focus on various materials grew. She has just started setting up Studio Wies, where she remains driven by her love of material and the question of what happens to residual material. Her practical approach and collaboration with companies define her designer identity in the world of materials.
11:20 – 11:50
Sander Boer, Starling Associates Forest-2-File-2-Factory. Parametric Strategies for Biobased Materials
Sander Boer specializes in generative and parametric design, areas in which he has developed a lot of expertise. His skills extend to Building Information Modeling (BIM) and non-standard architecture, and can be seen as one of the early forerunners of parametric design in the Netherlands and beyond. More recently, he extends this expertise to circular and biobased design as co-founder of Starling Associates. This talk explores innovative approaches to the use of bio-based materials through the use of parametric design strategies, ultimately aiming for more efficient and sustainable manufacturing processes.
11:35 – 12:05
Shahar Livne, Shahar Livne Design Studio Alchemy and material design
Conceptual Material Designer Shahar Livne’s practice is narrative-based on materials as a central theme. She aims to create a critical perspective on the use of materials in humans and nonhumans to understand and communicate wide public social, philosophical, and ecological issues. By using Critical, speculative, and Discursive design as methodologies, she presents the complex systems of the world by communicating through neutrality, giving the viewer an open space for developing opinions, understanding the world’s complex and entangled systems, stimulating discussions about ecology and material culture and spark the feeling of wonder and discovery.
12:10 – 12:40
Nicholas Bouchard, Gomi No Sensei Material Ecology. Designing for a Regenerative Future
Nicholas is at the forefront of a fascinating intersection of fields including materials science, biotechnology, manufacturing technologies, engineering and design, all underpinned by a strong entrepreneurial spirit. In his professional practice, he has made notable progress in integrating sustainable practices into manufacturing technologies and design processes at companies such as Landlife Company and MVRDV, reflecting a strong technical and management focus. In this thought-provoking talk, we delve into the emerging field of material ecology, a discipline at the intersection of biology and materials science.
12:25 – 12:55
Huub Looze, Omlab Biocircularprinting for sustainable construction
Designer and 3D printing freak Huub Looze makes everything 3D-printable. Seemingly worthless raw materials can be used in a high-quality manner with a self-developed printing technique. He is co-founder of Omlab, the (material) design studio that innovates for construction that does not exclude (soil) biodiversity.
Omlab designs low-emission material mixtures and nature-friendly applications for a sector that needs to be radically transformed. Omlab is currently working on robotic upscaling of the biodegradable printing technology. Based on the vision ‘Replace concrete with less strong material where possible; and immediately make it positive for nature’. To develop this, the studio won a testing ground from Heembouw.
12:45 – 13:15
Chris Kievid, Interactivist SuperSurfaces. Innovation in Sustainability through Functional Surfaces
Chris Kievid is a Rotterdam-based designer and founder of ‘Interactivist’, a design practice known for creating distinctive, socially conscious experiences. His passion and expertise lie in the convergence of design, technology and architecture. Interactivist specializes in creating large-scale, immersive experiences that seamlessly merge these domains and engage audiences in highly engaging and memorable ways. This lecture highlights how innovation in technology and design can lead to more sustainable and aesthetically enriched spaces, while also addressing the functional and social aspects of the built environment.
13:00 – 13:30
Hedwig Heinsman, Aectual 3D Printing Interior Finishes and Furniture from Waste in a Circular Loop
Hedwig Heinsman is mede-oprichter en creatief directeur van Aectual, het toonaangevende online platform voor interieurobjecten en afwerkingen gemaakt in een volledig circulaire materiaalkringloop via XL 3D-printen van gerecyclede afvalmaterialen. De geavanceerde technologie van Aectual wordt omarmd door wereldwijde merken als Tiffany & Co., Hermes en Disney, maar ook door veelgeprezen ontwerpers zoals Patricia Urquiola en Zaha Hadid architecten. Eerder richtte Hedwig DUS op, bekend van het bekroonde 3D Print Canal House. Ze heeft een Cum Laude Masters in Architectuur behaald aan de Technische Universiteit van Delft en heeft internationale onderscheidingen verdiend, waaronder de SEA Global Sustainability Entrepreneurship Award en de Amsterdam Awards for the Arts.
13:20 – 15:05
BNI Materializing Circularity
Circulariteit lijkt op een complex dashboard met talloze knoppen, waarbij elk project specifieke keuzes vereist. Het is van essentieel belang om te navigeren in onze overwegend lineaire wereld met de nodige kennis en inzicht. In de workshop Materializing Circularity neem je deel aan een interactief evenement waarin de impact van materiaalkeuzes en ontwerpbeslissingen wordt beoordeeld, gebruikmakend van de Inter Matter materiaaldatabase en inzichten uit The NOT-SO-EASY Guide. Doe met ons mee voor boeiende discussies over impact, valkuilen, het identificeren van makkelijk haalbare doelen het formuleren van langetermijnstrategieën.
13:35 – 14:05
Erik Tempelman, TU Delft Materials and Energy – what every designer needs to know
Erik Tempelman (Vlissingen, 1969) holds an MSc in aerospace engineering and a PhD in materials and sustainability, both from TU Delft. At present, he holds a position as associate professor at this same university, with over 30 years of accumulated knowledge on materials, design, and innovation. His publications include several academic textbooks and many professional publications – 20+ in the Dutch professional journal Constructeur alone. An enthusiastic speaker, Erik is known for his ability to explain even the most complex topics in simple terms – and make you want to learn more.
What wool can do
Delve into wool’s potential for interior and textile sectors, and its positive impact on local ecosystems and communities. Don’t miss this chance to be part of the change towards a circular and responsible approach to clothing.
3D PRinting (part 2)
The continuation of the lecture programme about 3D printing and the challenges designers face.
Moderator: Simone de Waart
15:25 – 15:55
Stijntje Jaspers, Fibershed The Value of Wool
With more than 25 years of experience in leading creative positions in the internationally operating Dutch fashion-industry, Stijntje is fully committed to bio-circular textiles and clothing. With her creative background and conceptual mindset she works as co-founder and program director of Fibershed Netherlands on connecting the dots for the necessary system change towards a regenerative future. Stijntje did the modular master Sustainability and Systemic Change at Nyenrode University and is the author of the book ‘Goede Gespreksstof’ about the impact and opportunities of our clothes for teenagers.
14:15 – 14:45
Tjeerd Veenhoven, Huis Veendam An overview of sustainable design interventions
Tjeerd Veenhoven graduated from the Art Academy in Arnhem in 2000 as a product designer. Over the past 15 years, Tjeerd Veenhoven has focused entirely on developing sustainable value chains based on organic materials that he, in collaboration with many partners, tries to valorize into circular products that cause as little damage as possible to our eco-system. Despite his relentless positivity, Tjeerd Veenhoven is more aware than anyone else of the bleak position our planet currently finds itself in.
16:00 – 16:30
Beatrice Waanders, The Soft World Dutch wool in the international high-end design world
Beatrice Waanders is an international renowned textilesartist and since 15 years specialized in local Dutch wool. She’s one of the pioneers of radical sustainable wool and natural fiberart and an ambassador for revaluation of local Dutch wool. Her wool she obtains straight via sheepflock grazingprojects for restore of natural biodiversity in order of Dutch governmental landscape conservation organisations like Natuurmonumenten and Staatsbosbeheer. Her art is presented at expositions like DDW, Maison & Objet, Milan Designweek, Object, Big Art, PAN and Art Basel Miami. She worked for several prestigious brands like LVMH, John Galliano, Maison Margiela, singer Rihanna and Dutch artist Joep van Lieshout.
14:50 – 15:20
Volker Ruitinga, Vertico Excellence in 3D Concrete Printing for Design & Architecture
While working in the automotive industry Volker Ruitinga became fascinated by 3D printing. In 2018 he started Vertico in an effort to upscale the 3D printing proces. In using concrete as a material he saw an opportunity to combine his love for additive manufacturing with his appreciation of architecture and design. He holds a degree in Philosophy (cum laude) from the Erasmus University, is married and has two children.
16:35 – 17:05
Fibershed Wool Working Group Good Conversations: Why Wool
Pioneers from Fibershed’s wool-working-group explore how to reassess the true value of wool. Wool is a renewable, natural, durable and high quality fiber. What opportunities does this 100% fossil free material has to offer the interior and textile sector? Can we measure the positive impact its primary source has on our regional landscapes and communities? Come and join us for this insightful and engaging conversation with among others Beatrice Waanders – The Softworld, Hollands Wol Collectief and Stijntje Jaspers, program director Fibershed NL.
15:45 – 16:15
Iris Bekkers & Shams Hazim, Studio Babel Towards climate adaptive insect habitats
Shams Hazim and Iris Bekkers are the founders of Studio Babel. They both are passionate about design that helps to revive our ecosystems and promotes biodiversity. Their belief is that the city of the future is one where we flourish and collaborate with nature. To bring this vision to reality, they study how they can use the technique of 3D printing with clay, combined with old irrigation techniques to create climate adaptive insect habitats. This way, they provide insects and other small often overseen organisms with a more resilient habitat providing for their needs.
16:20 – 16:50
Sol Sanchez Cimarelli, IOUS Studio Symbiotic Surfaces: Exploring the Fusion of 3D Printing and Moss in Planter Tiles
Sol Sanchez Cimarelli, Argentinian architect based in Rotterdam and co-founder of IOUS Studio, works at the intersection of parametric design and digital fabrication. With a background in digital oriented architecture, Sol integrates technical expertise into the creative process. Sol’s keen interest in biodesign acts as a catalyst, propelling her towards an innovative fusion of technology and nature.
Through IOUS Studio, she is working towards the reconceptualization of traditional architecture, introducing a dynamic synthesis of computational design and ecological awareness. IOUS Studio approach embarks on a transformative journey, where each structure serves as a testament to the seamless coexistence of the digital and the organic in architectural landscapes.
16:55 – 17:25
Yufei Gao Storytelling in the age of data and digital fabrication
Yufei Gao is multi-disciplinary design researcher. She is also a maker who uses materials and techniques to convey stories, making abstract matters tangible and relatable. Her work often has an interactive and interdisciplinary nature, and it carries a playful and humorous essence, tackling urgent matters-like climate change-in our society. Since graduating in 2023, her work has primarily revolved around 3D-printed ceramics. She utilises parametric design tools and digital fabrication techniques to create ceramic pieces, with storytelling(or artistic data visualisation) for environmental awareness as the main incentive.
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We look forward to seeing you there! Can’t make it? You can also buy a livecast ticket to view the lectures live from the comfort of home.