Co-Creation | In the TextielLab

Co-Creation | In the TextielLab

24 April 2016 till 12 March 2017

Where heritage, craftsmanship and innovation meet

The TextielMuseum in Tilburg offers so much more than the history of the local textile industry. It is a ‘working museum’, which spans conservation, exhibition and creation, bridging the gap between the heritage and craftsmanship of the past and innovation for the future. Today’s fast-changing world requires smart solutions and applications. The TextielLab, the museum’s technical heart, initiates partnerships with the aim of developing and supporting new, innovative projects. This collaborative approach to research and development can be seen in Co-creation, which features three major interior projects with prominent design agencies Inside Outside and Studio Samira Boon. From concept to realisation, the exhibition traces the projects’ creation over the past two years in the TextielLab. The importance of technique, craftsmanship and the combination of old and new knowledge play a central role. These projects contribute to the positioning of the TextielMuseum as Europe’s leading centre of textile knowledge and expertise.

The first project is ‘Cosmic Curtain’, a large-scale curtain developed and produced by Inside Outside led by Petra Blaisse in collaboration with the TextielLab for the Qatar National Library. The library was designed by the renowned architecture firm OMA and consists of an open plaza spanned by a bridge. The section of the building that folds down from this bridge forms an auditorium with tiered seating for events and presentations. Inside Outside was given the challenging task of designing a curtain that could both close off and define this space. The main challenge lies in designing a fabric that was flexible enough to move between the horizontal and diagonal structure of the space, without compromising the aesthetic quality. In the exhibition, visuals of the end result convey the immense size of the project. 

 ‘Cosmic Curtain’ in Qatar, design rendering: Inside Outside - 2015

The second project was designed by Studio Samira Boon. Samira has worked with the TextielLab since 2013 on textile structures inspired by origami, the Japanese art of paper folding. A number of assignments for the museum collection led to ‘Super Folds’, complex self-folding textiles produced through a careful combination of yarn and weave. Once removed from the loom, the textiles assume the pre-programmed folds, thereby creating a 3D structure. The starting point of the commission was the realisation of large woven folded structures that could serve as room dividers. The prototype and samples from the research phase are both included in the exhibition.

‘Archi Folds Y’ (serie ‘Super Folds’) by Samira Boon - 2015 made in the TextielLab. photo: Rene van der Hulst i.o.v. TextielMuseum 
Building: Provinciehuis ’s Hertogenbosch 

Curtains are used to block sunlight so why don’t they also absorb it to produce energy? This was the question posed by Inside Outside, which set about the challenging task of developing an exterior curtain with integrated solar cells that convert sunlight into electricity. With the technical assistance of smart textile experts Solar Fiber, the idea was elaborated in the TextielLab. The prototype, ‘Solar Curtain’, is presented in Co-creation.

‘Solar Curtain’ by Inside Outside - 2015 made in the Tommy de Lange i.o.v. TextielMuseum 

Research & development in the TextielLab
The TextielMuseum is enterprising, innovative and ambitious. Thanks to our in-house skills and facilities, we are the leading centre of textile knowledge and expertise, both nationally and internationally. Businesses focus largely on commercial interests and the rapid production of successful end-products, limiting the amount invested in research and development. This is just one of the reasons why the TextielLab is prioritising the research and development of innovative textile applications. By experimenting with materials and technology, we aim to put textiles more firmly on the map. The theme running through the exhibition and these projects is ‘co-creation’: between the TextielLab, the design agencies and the corporate partners involved.


‘Cosmic Curtain’:
Inside Outside (textile designer), OMA (architect), TextielLab (developer and producer), Brookfield Multiplex (client), Centexbel (textile competence centre), yarn suppliers (various), external clothing workshop, LUCA School of Arts (intern).

‘Solar Curtain’:
Inside Outside (designer), TextielLab (developer and producer), Solar Fiber (technical adviser smart textiles), TextielMuseum (client), yarn suppliers (various), H. Stoll GmbH & Co. KG (machinery manufacturer).

‘Super Folds’:
Studio Samira Boon (designer), TextielLab (developer and producer), TextielMuseum (client), Lindauer Dornier GmbH (machinery manufacturer), ROC Tilburg – School of Fashion, Sint Lucas Boxtel, AMD – School of Fashion Düsseldorf (interns).

Concept, graphic design exhibition:
Studio Boot, ‘s- Hertogenbosch 

With financial support from:

Gemeente Tilburg
SCI (Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie)
Provincie Noord Brabant / bkkc (Brabants kenniscentrum kunst en cultuur)
Mondriaan Fonds