MADE IN: Crafts – Design Narratives

Research project, traveling exhibition

October 2018 to January 2021

Zagreb, Belgrade, Ljubljana and Andelsbuch


From October the 2nd 2020, the traveling exhibition MADE IN: CRAFTS – DESIGN NARRATIVES, currently showing in Ljubljana, will move to the Werkraumhaus. The exhibition is a result of two-year activities conducted by six partnering organizations: Museum of Arts and Crafts, OAZA (Croatia); Museum of Architecture and Design (Slovenia); Werkraum Bregenzerwald (Austria); Nova Iskra, Mikser (Serbia), within a larger MADE IN Platform initiative.





The exhibition showcases the Crafts Archive of 40 craftspeople from Bregenzerwald, Croatia, Slovenia and Serbia through photo documentation and stories. The participating craftspeople were chosen for their superior craft knowledge, the level of endangerment of their craft, their representativeness for the area, but also for their geographical position.


The second part of the exhibition, Crafts — Design Narratives, refers to eight specific projects that emerged through a two-year process, carried by each country separately, addressing issues specific to the local production context. The narratives are results of the workshops and residencies conducted through collaborations of design professionals and craftspeople, mediated, co-mentored and curated by individuals from the involved partnering organisations, and are presented through different formats and media.


Thus, the curatorial concept is built upon the idea of expending the MADE IN platform through future exhibitions. The potential hosts are encouraged to contribute to the Crafts Archive by mapping locally specific crafts and conducting new craft — design collaborations.




MADE IN is a research, design and heritage platform that proposes new collaborative practices and knowledge exchange between the traditional craftspeople and contemporary designers. It engages craftspeople, designers, researchers, curators and theoreticians on a quest to pose relevant questions about the topics of heritage and production in today’s society through research and archiving of local crafts, conducting workshops and residencies and promoting ideas through a travelling exhibition.


The MADE IN syntagma in the title carries a reference to anonymous and to some extent non-human production of today, which is taking place in the countries of the Far East. It emphasizes the position of design within the current market oriented neo-liberal capitalist paradigm, with a reference to its source—craftsmanship and making, from which the discipline was inseparable up until the advent of industrialization. Today, on the brink of a technological revolution there seems to be a need to pose the questions about our physical and virtual space again: WHERE is it made? WHO is it made by? WHAT is it made of? FOR whom is it made? WHERE does it come from?




MADE IN in the Bregenzerwald region

Workshop: Crafting, Cleaning & Caring with Rianne Makkink

May, 2019 – Werkraumhaus

Crafted objects and items gain beauty over time simply by using them. Repairing and maintaining them add layers of patina. A long lasting relation between the object and the subject. The workshop Crafting, Cleaning & Caring by Dutch designer Rianne Makkink and partner of Studio Makkink & Bey explored the materiality and immateriality of this relation. In collaboration with local craftspeople, producers and makers the participants worked with traditional techniques and experimentation.



Photo: Matthias Dietrich



MADE IN Seminar: Design&Crafts on Display #3

May, 2019 – Werkraumhaus

The third MADE IN Seminar took place in the scenic Alpine setting of Bregenzerwald. Werkraum Bregenzerwald – a collaborative of around 100 regional craft and trade companies – hosted the partners and invited guests for a two day experience in the Werkraumhaus and its surrounding workshops at the end of May, 2019. Designed by Swiss architect Peter Zumthor the building serves as a showcase and community centre of the regional craftspeople. The seminar discussed modes and places to display contemporary crafts and design. 



Photo: Matthias Dietrich