Overtreders W turns merchandise into cyanotype prints for Amsterdam's Albert Cuyp market

AMSTERDAM – A century-old market in the city's De Pijp neighbourhood acquires an entrance marked with a witty mélange of merchandise. 

The once lesser-known eastern entry to the market now makes an entrance into the mainstream. Realised with the support of the city of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts, this statement structure stands ten meters tall and eleven meters wide. Flecked with products, the portal forms a befitting gate, alluding to the experience which lies ahead of each visitor passing below it. Decorating the open framework like a Christmas tree, hundreds of handmade lanterns – made with the same process as an architect's blueprint – cleverly depict items sold by the vendors inside.

During the sunshine-filled days of summer, the founders of Amsterdam-based Overtreders W rolled a mobile printing studio through the market's 258 stalls. Going one by one, Reinder Bakker and Hester van Dijk collected a sundry assortment of items for sale and made an arrangement on light sensitive cyanotype paper. After patiently waiting for a few moments, the objects were then lifted from the paper to reveal striking white shapes on a cyan blue background.

The highly detailed images of fresh produce, household knickknacks, undergarments and fashions were then photographed and printed onto the three-sided shades. Amid a gridded spaceframe are lanterns with each letter from the market's name of Albert Cuyp markt. See more of the original cyanotype imagery on display at gallery OODE located at Singel 159a in Amsterdam or take one home.

The precision of the cyanotype printing process even shows a gradation of daylight as it passes through the foliage from a line-up of carrots and the intricate lacework of handheld fans maintains its crisp detail.

Roll back to last summer and join Overtreders W as founders Reinder Bakker and Hester van Dijk make their way through the market to make the cyanotype prints (video in Dutch):

Photos Jorn van Eck


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