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Josephine de Fijter

Driving Dutch Design – Josephine de Fijter

By 19-08-2021

ONE WEEK ABOUT Driving Dutch Design by curators Patrick Aarts Sen (BNO) and Katja Lucas (DDF)

Driving Dutch Design is the professionalisation and networking programme of ABN AMRO, Beroepsorganisatie Nederlandse Ontwerpers (BNO) and Dutch Design Foundation (DDF) that helps talented designers get started in the world of entrepreneurship. Josephine de Fijter is one of them.

A breathable cushion, specially designed to give children emotional support during medical treatment.

Medical encounters can leave a deep mark on the psyche of a child. They are often unnecessary frightening and stressful. The main aim is to bring autonomy back to the child by giving them a method of expression. The child receives the cuddle that will give them supported breathing throughout the examination. Rhythmic breathing exercises can have a long-term positive effect on our well-being. It stimulates brain regions that enable us to regulate our emotions.

The object is also designed to connect children and doctors towards a trusting relationship. Being medically trained, pediatricians are in need of empathy tools and resources to read the emotional state of a child. Aiki gives the doctor visual cues to understand the height of fear the child is residing in. Measuring the child’s breathing tempo which translates into gradually changing the color of the object.

Hyle Morphe
A material study of the fungi waste product of the Kombucha drink. I investigated how our skin can interact with this non-human living material for its probiotic value.

Driving Dutch Design
“As a young designer I am very grateful for being a part of this program. I find it unique that we in The Netherlands have organized such a framework of support for designers. Believing in investing into the collective effort  to improve the eco-system for all designers. It has taught me tremendously but especially how to combine the business side with the artistic side of my practice.”

For more information about the participants, the programme and registration, please visit