Dutch Open Air Museum - Crafts Workshop 2022
Soda transformed the former entrance building of the Netherlands Open Air Museum into a 'Crafts Workshop': a multifunctional space where visitors can learn about crafts by experimenting with them themselves. In April 2022, the Crafts Workshop was officially opened.
As a first, architectural intervention Soda removed all the 'buzz' that had accumulated over the past fifty years. By reopening the big windows, the view of the surroundings is restored. In order to create one large space, walls are removed where possible and the floor is restored. Strong colours such as yellow and orange determine location and routing. To increase the visibility of the entrance, a striking neon has been applied on the outside wall. In addition, Soda has devised an 'outdoor workshop' next to the entrance where tough crafts such as blacksmithing and wood bending can be practised.
In the interior, the image of a workshop and crafts is evoked at various levels, with 'simple' and 'robust' being the key words. All the furniture is intentionally basic. The two labs (one 'clean workshop' for textiles, the other for woodwork) are provided with solid workbenches. The workshops are separated by a glass wall, by which a feeling of spaciousness is mantained. On this glass wall, enlarged outlines of tools are applied. As a contrast to the basic furniture, some craftsmen have produced a masterwork at Soda's request: a big neon on the outside (3tacbv, design by Esther Noyons), wooden benches (Peter Roefs) and an enormous willow lampshade (Esme Hofman) in the entrance.
With the Crafts Workshop, Soda has created a bright building with a fresh, cool interior where visitors can experience the importance of crafts for themselves in an accessible way. Furthermore, a video and an exhibition space give visitors extra information regarding various crafts.
For this assignment Soda worked closely together with studio-PA2 (Pieter Aartsen), Esther Noyons (graphic design), Julia Roeselers (video) and Pieter van Lier (video editing).