With Asha taking the stage as our first-time moderator, four speakers were welcomed and introduced for the evening’s speaker event; ed. #23 of A City Made By People. With Amsterdam’s cityscape in full view at Zoku’s rooftop floor, City Enthusiasts and passionate creatives alike came together for an evening of inspiration and connection. For our last edition of the year, we heard stories from:
Cornelia Dinca, Delegations Lead of Amsterdam Smart City & CycleSpace
It doesn’t stop there, Cornelia is also the founder of Sustainable Amsterdam (making a total of three hats!). In this evening, Cornelia shared with us the Amsterdam-based approaches that lead to a sustainable, smart city. With her interactive, ‘popcorn-sharing’ style presentation, Cornelia asked the audience what we thought a smart city was. More specifically, what ‘smart’ meant.
“Why smart? There’s all these different urban ideals you can choose from [i.e. resilient city, creative city, just city, happy city, etc]. ‘Smart’ is not a goal in it of itself, but smart is the way of thinking and a way of working that should help us achieve all these other urban ideals. I think that’s quite key.”
Roy Cremers, Directeur of voordekunst
Directly translated, voordekunst means ‘for the arts’ and up on stage to tell us more about this highly successful crowdfunding platform is its Directeur, Roy Cremers. He shared with us how voordekunst not only offers a platform for artists to showcase their work, but how it also provides advice and feedback to anyone who wants to start a campaign for their creative project.
“We really want to help artists in connecting with their audiences. But also on the other hand, we’d really like audiences to connect with the arts, to get introduced to artists.”
Jetske Voorneveld, Designer & Creative Produce of AKWAMAN
As a special treat, we also invited Jetske to tell us more of the African & Dutch fair-trade clothing line, AKWAMAN. Through crowdfunding their campaign on voordekunst, Jetske was able to share some insights on how she and her partner Ekwele, were able to combine two worlds through their love of fashion.
With this campaign, they're aiming to raise €8,000 to produce a small stock of handmade jackets and trousers by local tailors in Ghana. With its launch AKWAMAN plans to donate 5% of every order to Amazonian refugees, simultaneously raising awareness to the problems existing in the area.
Jan Truijens Martinez, Legal Officer of VOUW
Our fourth and final speaker was Jan from the Dutch design collective, VOUW. Jan raised an interesting question during his presentation, ‘what does it mean to lose the stars?’ Due to light pollution, 2.4 billion people currently can’t see the stars and VOUW, aims to highlight this darkness.
The main idea behind VOUW’s light installation, City Gazing, is to raise awareness for light pollution by showing people what we’re missing out on. He also told us of how the City Gazing installation came about, also sharing its challenges in showcasing the message of light pollution.
City Enthusiasts stayed behind after the presentations to talk amongst one another and our speakers. With a few cold beverages at hand, it didn't take long for the room to fill with the buzz of laughter and conversation.
We’d like to give a thank you hug to our friends at Zoku for always providing a great space and comfortable atmosphere for our talks! And to our local speakers and City Enthusiasts that joined us for the evening, thank you for showing up and sticking around!
For those of you who didn’t make it, join us in the new year on the 17th of January, 2018! We hope to see you there.
Written by Sarah Picolet
Picture by Jan Arsenovic