Maykel Roovers’ Critical Blocks

The interesting work of young designer Maykel Roovers is primarily based on what is happening in society and everything that can be found in it. The designer is mainly attracted to news with an edge: “I always try to approach it lightly so to be not pedantic. Searching for contrasts, playing with contradictions, I try to create marvel and to elicit a smile.” Roovers, deservingly so, was granted a lot of media attention with his 2012 ArtEZ Institute of the Arts Arnhem graduation project called Critical Blocks.

For the Critical Blocks collection Maykel Roovers used laser etching on wood. This technique adds allure and value to products, but not every object or surface could be laser etched in the same way. This forced the designer to be innovative and patient, finding the right method for individual pieces and parts as he deliberately came to the subject of his collection in the first place. On the basis of his research Roovers selected a number of buildings that in his eyes epitomize today’s zeitgeist, transforming these architectural types into toy blocks with two objectives in mind.

The first was to shed a light on the excessive nature of contemporary large scale architecture, the mega factory, by using the poor and abstract form language of toy blocks. The second objective was to make full use of the contrast between the harshness of contemporary architecture and the illusory children’s world of friendliness and unlimited possibilities cultivated by adults.

Therefore in Roovers’ eyes, the Critical Blocks collection is made for children in the first place, but at the same time he also sees it a good fit for the child in adults. We also see the appeal for everyone who can see the great artisinal quality of the collection. The Cooltower Candle, also a design of Roovers’ hand, coming in seven colors makes a nice addition to the Critical Blocks collection and fortunately for us, it’s burning out which takes 18 hours, doesn’t hurt the environment as it’s life-size equivalents do.

We look forward for Roovers’ new projects and are curious what part of contemporary society he will focus on next.

To buy the Critical Blocks collection or a Cooltower Candle see here