Envisioning a global design landscape where inclusivity, transparency, and accessibility prevail. 1m2 Collective strives to be a catalyst for change, fostering a design industry that celebrates diversity, provides equitable opportunities, and challenges conventional norms. 

At 1m2 Collective, our mission is to reshape the design ecosystem by actively addressing challenges faced by emerging talent. We pioneer alternative exhibition spaces, champion inclusive selection processes, and spotlight the true costs of participation. Through our projects at renowned design festivals, we provide platforms for new voices, elevate migrant perspectives, and inspire transparent conversations within the design community. Our commitment is to create a safe space for conversation, learning, and empowerment. We envision a future where every designer, regardless of background, can thrive and contribute meaningfully to the ever-evolving world of design.

Founded by Jeffrey Heiligers in 2021
Co-founder: Sophie Balch, Tijn de Kok & Jeroen van Veluw

Photo by Roza Schous

Photo by Roza Schous
Photo by Roza Schous
Photo by Roza Schous
Photo by Roza Schous
Dutch Design Week '21
Whilst DDW chose inclusivity as one of their themes for the festival’s applicants, we had the question; how inclusive is the design festival itself?

At Dutch Design Week 2021 (DDW), 1m2 Collective had its debut exhibition. Whilst DDW chose inclusivity as one of their themes for the festival’s applicants, we had the question; how inclusive is the design festival itself? With the costs of presenting your work being out of reach for many upcoming designers, our goal was to explore how we could make this process more inclusive and visualise the true costs of participating.

At the Van Abbe Museum, 1m2 Collective presented the works of 18 designers in 1m2 ground space. Through an open call and independent jury process, participants were selected in an inclusive way. The individual pieces made an impact through their own story and as a statement as a collective.

The total cost of the exhibition's research, production and design was documented, published, and presented to visitors. This opened the conversation and encouraged a transparent conversation about the true investments designers make to be present at such design events.
Berry Dijkstra
Karime Salame Sainz (Diversity Coordinator | AMFI)
Katja Lucas (Senior manager Design Works | Dutch Design Foundation)
Jonah Link (Data analist & adviseur New Economy | Drawdown Europe)
Brandy Sanmoeradi (Archivaris/ Informatiespecialist | Gerrit Rietveld Academie)
Shadman Shahid (Head MA Photography & Society | KABK Den Haag)

by Natalia Gurova
Kültür gemma!, VIENNA DESIGN WEEK, 1m2 Collective
Thanks to support from kültür gemma!, the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK was able to offer a new fellowship, the aim of which is to increase the awareness and appreciation of migrant positions in design. For Vienna Design Week 2022 the artist Natalia Gurova, who was selected from the many applicants, has addressed the context of the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK in detail and developed, together with the Dutch 1m2 Collective, an exhibition with constantly changing exhibits (everyday objects) that cover a wide range of positions.

LIQUID HOUSE revolves around issues of historic and cultural identity as well as aspects of the (in-) accessibility of resources and formal and informal structures and networks. In addition to this, the outreach program of the group exhibition offers workshops with people interested in design from a number of migrant communities: Participants will work with Natalia Gurova and other designers represented at the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK on furniture designs that express financial, institutional, social, or political restriction – as metaphors in the form of an object.

Jeffrey Heiligers (1m2 Collective)
Catrin Seefranz (kültür gemma!)

Project by
Natalia Gurova
with: Mila Balzhieva, Aleksandra Bulgakova, Bartosz Dolhun,
Neda Nikolic, Tanya Shtykalo, Mariia Yeroshkina

Supported by
kültüř gemma!, Stadt Wien and 1m2 Collective

Dutch Design Week '22
How can design festivals provide space for new talent in an inclusive way? In this 1m2 expo we provided a platform for the works of 11 designers who have never exhibited at a design festival before.

As a designer, exhibiting your work at a major design event requires a big financial investment, and relies heavily on your network. For the majority of starting designers, no matter how talented, this makes exhibiting at a design festival out of reach. 1m2 Collective has set out to visualise this problem and provide a solution by fitting as many designers as possible into just 1m2 of ground space.

The smallest expo with the biggest impact!

Amber van Randelrooij

Zoë Papaikonomou 
Petra Janssen 
Lena Winterink 
Manal Aziz 
Thomas Killian Bruderer 

Zlín Design Week '23
Panel discussion; Building an Inclusive Design Festival

The opportunity to present at a design festival can be a great experience and career opportunity for a designer. How can design festivals create an inclusive environment for designers and make their festivals accessible to (not only emerging) designers?

1m2 Collective was invited by Zlín design week to join a panel discussion on the topic of inclusivity at design festivals.

You may also like

Back to Top