Take a Detour

We, Nina Mathijsen and Marnix de Klerk, are graphic and illustrative designers who constantly push the boundaries of our field. We often work in a multidisciplinary way but stay true to the essence of visual communication: the message and the form go hand-in-hand and can strengthen each other. In recent years, we have focused on social activism and creating creative, out-of-the-box campaigns. However, we do not see ourselves as a typical campaign agency. Our work is often open-source and socially activist in nature. We collaborate with artists, spin doctors, and labor unions, aiming to build bridges while maintaining a creative role. How can the content be conveyed as powerfully as possible? We create installations, 3D paper objects, embroidered typography, posters, collections with stories, applied illustrations, newspaper collages, and conceptual book design. We also aim to keep surprising ourselves in our work. Work is also play.

Our work can be divided into social and cultural design, with our greatest ambition lying in the social sphere. We want to mobilize large groups of ‘invisible’ people, such as cleaners, distribution workers, Polish seasonal workers, and asylum seekers. As designers, we can influence public opinion and make statements. We have achieved successes by challenging neoliberal policies and hope to contribute to the broadening of this counterforce with our work.

Nina Mathijsen (Links) en Marnix de Klerk (rechts) foto door Kevin Kwee