OS ∆ OOS

say hi to_ OS ∆ OOS

Once and awhile you stumble upon a designer's work that you keep revisiting time and time again and really can't forget (not that you would want to!). OS ∆ OOS, an international success before their own country had a chance to realize what a design gem they had created, is one of those examples.

They mix the extremely conceptual with absolute functionality in a way that I've never seen before. Their sense of material, form, lines, color and conceptual functionality are truly groundbreaking and fascinating as pieces for the home and as stand alone works of art. We wanted to hear how they make decisions as a creative couple, how they got their start in furniture and product design and what types of projects they plan to do next.

 

words
say hi to_

date
December 3, 2015

length of read
5 minutes

say hi to_ Oskar and Sophie

 

Introduction

| SHT_ |



| Oskar |




| Sophie |




| Sophie |

Please Introduce yourself, for instance - If you just met a stranger at a party from a different industry all together, how would you briefly explain to them what you do?

Basically we start by saying that we are designers and the first question back is always what do you design. Since we both studied at the design academy Eindhoven, which is it's own breed of designers, we both graduated from the department man and well-being.

We often get that question, and especially with people without a background in design, art, architecture it is always quite difficult to explain. We never start thinking about the end product immediately when starting a new project. It is something that is derived from different angles.

haha if its still not understood we just say " we make products for the home"

| SHT_ |


| Sophie |


| Oskar |



| SHT_ |

| Sophie |



| Oskar |

You always have strong conceptual beginnings, but functionality is very important to you, how do you combine those two angles?

These two angles keep you sharp, giving you direction. This is the reason why we take certain choices.

Functionality are the guidelines, otherwise we would be making art - but our functionality is very minimized. Like we like to say "to the essence".


What is a typical day at work for you?

There isn't really a typical day at work, every day is different. That's the part I enjoy a lot, some days we work more in the workshop building lights for example and other days more computer work; emails, researching etc

Which of course makes it all very interesting, but also tiring as well. Everyday is indeed learning more and more from the last.. sometimes I wish we had more rhythm to be honest, or we need to sell more of the same product, therefore more repetitive production work ;-)

 
 

The Beginning

| SHT_ |


| Oskar |





| Sophie |




| SHT_ |



| Sophie |





| Oskar |




| SHT_ |

| Oskar |

What did your parents do? Did it influence in one way or another way what you do now?

My father is a Goldsmith so the creativity came from his side, not my mothers. The influences began with his love for technique and motors, and was a reason why I attended a mechanical engineering school before the design academy. It was not a wasted study since it plays a role in what we do now everyday, just in a more subtile way.

My parents are very interested in culture, history and architecture. When I was young, we spent rainy Sundays often in museums and during holidays we visited many churches and interesting historical buildings.


When did you know you wanted to be a designer? What gave you the idea and encouraged you to choose to study at the Design Academy Eindhoven?

I knew I wanted to do something creative, during the last two years of high school I visited a lot of Art Academies, but I thought it was always very messy and unorganised, that's how it looked to me at least. When visiting the Design Academy I knew this was the place where I wanted to study. I was also more drawn to the idea of creating objects/products that were not only based on aesthetics.

For me that idea came quite late, I was searching for another engineering school abroad to accompany my diploma and the design academy came access my path. My brother actually had the first idea to tackle design, but he wasn't finished with high school so I swooped in.

Did your brother finished up studying there too?

He did in fact follow a year later, we ended up graduating together... Dad was proud.

| SHT_ |


| Oskar |



| Sophie |


| SHT_ |


| Oscar |



| Sophie |

In retrospect do you think a university degree was necessary or worth the price for what you’re doing now?

Let's put it this way, I wouldn't have liked to study anywhere else at the time. We never learned practical business related aspects at the DAE, but you did find your own voice. Your personal voice is more important anyways.

Without it, I don't think it would have brought us to where we are now.


Did you have any odd jobs along the way? Did any of those influence you at all or did you learn things there that come into play now?

I had no side jobs during my studies, only an internship at Scholten & Baijings, which later turned into a 5 year long freelance position after school. There I learned more about how to present a studio then we did at the DAE.

That makes me think of the internship I did during the Design Academy, at Studio Pieke Bergmans, who at the time, was working all by herself. I knew I could not have a studio all by myself, so I'm still very happy that I have found Oskar! ;)

 
 

The Business

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| Oskar |






| SHT_ |

| Sophie |



| SHT_ |


| Oskar |

 

"We learned by doing… lots of trial and error."

A lot of creatives are worried they won’t be able to support themselves. When did you start really making money and how long did it take?

How long? When did it start???

We are still alive - lets put it that way. Little steps forward, but the steps are getting further apart - and in the right direction. We will start teaching in Amsterdam this fall, and regular request to take part in new projects are fantastic!


How did you know what to charge the first time you had a client?

We live in a city with only designers, everybody asks around, that’s great! Our beginning was more international then local.. which usually is the other way around, so our questions were mostly unanswered at the beginning.

Yes, I guess you were more well known in Paris and New York than in The Netherlands at the beginning.

I remember the Dutch press came by Rossana Orlandi and did a feature about all Dutch design studios. Later looking at the article, we were nowhere to be found - that was indeed the image we had in Holland. It took a few years until were were part of the group hahaha

| SHT_ |







| Oskar |




| SHT_ |

| Oskar |

A lot of creatives are full of ideas and talent but don’t know where to start when it comes to the business, accounting and PR side of things. Was this hard for you when you went out on your own? Was one of you experienced with the business handling, accounting, etc. or did you learn this by doing?

We learned by doing… lots of trial and error. In that sense, we are too much alike, we both just suck at the business side.


What was the hardest?

Being a jack of all trades... photography, website, book keeping... list goes on! Bloody difficult trying it all well, and then finding time left over for the design work - which should be the fun part!

 
 

Working With a Partner

| SHT_ |





| Oskar |


 

You met at your university working together and fall in love? Is that the right way to put it? How did you decide it would be a good Idea to really work together in real life after university? Did it just happen or did you actually plan it? Were you scared at some point you to mix relationship and profession?

The decision to work together came naturally (as it should) I was graduating just before Sophie (6 months) and that meant Sophie was helping me a lot. Once I graduated, I was helping her.... that seemed to go almost flawlessly that it seemed natural to continue.

It's always a risk to throw everything into one big pot; both work and the relationship need to stay strong or the other will deteriorate as well.

 

"It's always a risk to throw everything into one big pot; both work and the relationship need to stay strong or the other will deteriorate as well."

 

photo credit_

OS ∆ OOS

| SHT_ |


| Oskar |



| Sophie |

Does that put pressure on your relationship or it's not something that you even think about it because the balance is there naturally?

It's gotten to the point we can start to read each others thoughts. It makes things simpler and we have clearer division of tasks. I think our individual strengths are better utilised now - before we wanted to do everything together.

The hardest part is to leave work behind, trying to distinguish where the one begins an the other ends. We are actually having a discussion about it right now! If this is a good or bad thing, maybe it's fine and can we can therefore be even more forward towards each other during work because we have a relationship and know each other so well. Next question? haha

| SHT_ | 




| Sophie |




| Oskar |






| SHT_ |

| Oskar |

What are the benefits of working together versus working alone on design projects? Are there negative sides too? Did you ever wanted to make your own project all alone?

It's easier with a partner. Working together on projects is a lot more fun than all by yourself, we keep each other sharp and go back and forth all the time getting to almost another level where one most likely wouldn't alone.

On the negative side… we worked too many hours since there is nobody waiting at home. A solution we found was to get a dog - it forced us to go out and also helped with new inspirations as we take wanders through the woods. Fresh air is also a wonder for getting a clear head! We think much clearer on our return!

Bruce, isn't it? I hope he is not alone too much!

haha that little dude is with us 24/7!

say hi to_ Bruce

| SHT_ |


| Sophie |


| Oskar |


| Oskar |

Can you describe your production process? What are your different roles and strengths in the company?

Oskar with his mechanical engineering background knows a lot more about construction and technical details.

Sophie is like the life guard at the pool, looking over a mass of chaos! She has the overview to make sure nobody drowns ;)

She is particularly sharp with the concepts too!

 
 
 

The Work

| SHT_ |

| Oskar |


| Sophie |


| Sophie |


| Oskar |

What do you have in the pipeline now?

Now… in two weeks we are off to Zanzibar in Tanzania, to take part in a project to try and rid the island of a overwhelming heap of glass bottles left by tourism.

We also have one new project for Dutch Design Week in collaboration with Baars & Boemhoff (big supplier of material for interior architecture).

We are also just beginning a new direction with two new galleries, one in Barcelona and the other in Zurich.

and a few things still über top secret!

 

"We very much like working for both galleries and producers. One involves more mainstream projects where costs and functionality play larger roles, with galleries we can be a little more bold, push the boundaries a little further."

 

| SHT_ |


| O and S |


| SHT_ |


| Sophie |

We will follow every step of this (be aware, I even did know the name of your dog ;) )

hahahah very sweet !


Where do you want to go with your career? How do you figure OS & OOS will develop in the future?

We very much like working for both galleries and producers. One involves more mainstream projects where costs and functionality play larger roles, with galleries we can be a little more bold, push the boundaries a little further.

photo credit_ Casper Sejersen

 
 

Extras

| SHT_ |


| Oskar |

Can you recommend one person that you know from any other creative discipline who has an amazing story that's worth sharing?

We worked with Niels Heymans and his girlfriend/ partner Emilie Pallard. He has a particularly unique vision of the world that can boarder the odd. They make wonderful things! 

 
 

Thank You Oskar & Sophie!

 
 

Eindhoven


What is the DNA of Eindhoven and how does this reflect in your work?

Eindhoven has been void of a creative center for a long time.. is not beautiful, and here you have nothing better to do then work! All the industry is here and the rents low! It's a good place to start if you ask us. We won't be here forever - that we know, where else? Not sure yet...


Best coffee in Eindhoven?
’t Koffiehuisje

Best co-work space in Eindhoven?
Broeinest
www.broeinest.nl

Best place to get a drink in Eindhoven?
Ketelhuis
http://www.ketelhuis.com

Hotel you would stay in if you weren’t from Eindhoven?
Blue Collar Hotel at Strijp-S
http://www.bluecollarhotel.nl/en/

Best unknown shop in Eindhoven?
Studio Ruig_ Clothing store in Strip-S, fashion brand designed in Eindhoven.
http://www.studioruig.com

Up and coming talent in Eindhoven?
Current Design Academy students ;)

Best place to take clients in Eindhoven?
Kazerne for drinks, dinner surrounded by exhibitions
http://kazerne.com

Resources to help you with your career (fab labs,  printers, accountants, programs)
De Factorij
http://de-factorij.nl

Fablab Brainport
http://fablabbrainport.nl

Broeinest,
www.broeinest.nl