Anna Badur

Department: Contextual Design

Drawn by nature

Everything in the natural world is shaped
by the environment in which it exists.
Landscapes are formed by natural forces
and weather conditions. Organisms adapt
to their natural habitats.

But environments also have the power to
shape and develop unique characters. Our
natural surroundings and the weather have
an enormous influence on how we develop,
feel and behave. A sunny day makes us
leave the house in a completely different
mood than a rainy day.

I grew up in East Friesland, the
northwestern-most part of Germany, whose
characteristic landscape is shaped by rough
weather conditions with endless rain, big
storms, and the tides of the North Sea. Over
time, these influences have resulted in a
very flat and bare landscape. On the one
hand, it could be described as empty and
sad, but on the other, it could be seen as
strikingly peaceful and timeless.

For me, it evokes an ambivalent feeling
of freedom and depression at the same
time. It has a melancholic beauty, which is
somehow mysterious yet deeply banal.
This unique atmosphere might trigger
a sensation of loneliness, but offers room
for poetry and creation.

But the landscape is not shaped by nature
alone. There has always been a battle
between human power and natural power.
Mankind has actually transformed the
landscape for its own safety by building
dykes and sea walls to protect against

I want to investigate if and how design
processes can take advantage of the
integration of natural forces in terms
of creation.

I will approach that question by doing
practical experiments based on the active
environmental circumstances in East
Friesland. Can these influences, often
experienced as negative, lead to meaningful
design proposals that capture the unique
atmosphere of the natural scenery?

What is it that creates beauty from the wet,
grey emptiness?

Copyright Design Academy Eindhoven

Copyright: Design Academy Eindhoven
Photographs: Joost Govers