Every object contains an image

Field Essays enables listening pauses between thinkers and practitioners in an attempt to weave other histories of the worlds we inhabit.

This second issue entitled Every Object Contains An Image juxtaposes the work of designer Jonathan Muecke (Detroit/Chicago, USA) and the work of photographer Bas Princen (Rotterdam/Singapore/Zürich). With his photographs, Princen recomposes built and un-built landscapes — revealing their mind blowing oddities and carefully guiding our eye through them. On the other hand, the core motive of Muecke’s design practice is “to retain potential in an object”. Muecke’s bold artefacts function as probes that venture into the realm of our perception — attempting to detect its hidden mechanisms. Both create visual propositions that “make room” — thereby making room for another reading of the world. Included in this issue are a Manual by Muecke and a Reference Booklet by Princen, printed in a numbered edition.

Realised in partnership with Onomatopee, Utrecht Manifest No. 4  Biennale of Social Design, and the Sandberg Instituut / Studio for Immediate Spaces. Made possible through a grant of The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. Graphic design by Ericandmarie.

This issue of Field Essays manifested itself through a work-in-process exhibition as part of FACE VALUE, TENT.Rotterdam (17.11.2011 – 08.01.2012). FACE VALUE focused “on the re-evaluation of the question of autonomy in the design process. What role does independent research play – non-commissioned, with no thought of possible applications and without significance – in the development of the designer’s work?”

The book was launched through a double lecture and exhibition hosted by Onomatopee.

Bas Princen and Jonathan Muecke continue to work together from time to time. Muecke was invited in 2016 by gallery Maniera Brussels for a residency at the Van Wassenhove House by the Belgian architect Juliaan Lampens to produce new work (Maniera 07). Muecke and I made another audio Reference booklet for the occasion.