ARTIST TALK: studionvb

The design of IMPULS derives its disruptive nature from the way it uses soft materials in a hard environment such as a station concourse. What many passengers do not realise is that there is a building site under the artwork for the new stairs and escalators down to the metro.

In a space where designs often have to be functional and vandal-proof, IMPULS affects the responses and emotions of passengers who are mostly hurrying along. The pulsating illumination makes the object seem to be alive. The design is a narrative about the links between the train and the metro. This connection is made by letting the three triangles from the ceiling of the metro protrude into the train station concourse. During the day, the light is white and radiates calm. IMPULS will take on the role of a welcoming beacon for the Amsterdam Light Festival, changing in the evenings to the distinctive campaign colours of the festival.

Niek van Brussel, from studionvb, creator of the Impuls about the idea behind it: “The central hall of the station is a national monument. The metro, on the other hand, is part of the North / South line. A larger time gap between these contemporary modalities is almost unthinkable and yet they are now physically connected to each other. The design of Impuls Amsterdam Centraal revolves around the connection between these two worlds: the world of the train and that of the metro. Extending from the ceiling of the metro to the central hall of Amsterdam Central, creating a dialogue between the underground and the above ground, whereas the central hall is characterized by romantic and especially monumental elements and paintings, the metro is more contemporary, sleek and technical: by allowing the triangles to penetrate the hall without much detail, these two worlds touch each other and the connection between the metro and the train.“

NS commissioned studionbv to tackle the challenge of designing an object that alleviates the nuisance of the building work, adds ambience, and is both inviting and dynamic. On december 3, 10 and 17, Niek van Brussel gives an explanation of the artwork.

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