At the invitation of Wendy Plomp – founder and curator of Dutch Invertuals – Nina van Bart portrayed the contemporary designers who took part in the exhibition ‘Happy Future’. Nina van Bart was responsible for both the art direction and the prop- and set design. For the making of the photos she collaborated with Thomas Oorschot.

The title of the exhibition – ‘Happy Future’ – was provided by Wendy Plomp and was a statement with which she wanted to start a discussion: how hopeful can a future be? Can we pursue an optimistic future through constructive proposals? Is there at all a vision of the future that differs from the doomsday scenarios that looking ahead often brings? A discussion that Nina van Bart included in the photographs through the use of Fresnel lenses, with which she on the one hand enlarged the physical characteristics of the designers and visualised anticipation, and on the other hand arrived at portraits that are at once joyful and unsettling. Because the portraits also served to communicate around the exhibition, they also contributed to the general atmosphere and identity of ‘Happy Future’.   

Dutch Invertuals is a collective that brings together contemporary designers and focuses on experimentation and innovation. They organise internationally renowned exhibitions around specific themes to which the selected designers respond. Happy Future’ was realised within the framework of the Salone del Mobile in Milan, Italy in 2014.

Art direction, prop- and set design: Nina van Bart, Photography: Thomas Oorschot, Commissioned by Wendy Plomp of Dutch Invertuals