First Edition - Zandmotor

Atelier NL's 'ZandGlas' line features designer glass objects made from fused sand. Each beautifully crafted set is composed of carafe and three drinking glass of varying sizes. The first edition features sand from a special coastal feature in Southern Holland called Zandmotor, or 'Sand Engine,' a huge artificial peninsula created in 2011 to reinforce the Dutch coastline. The Zandmotor was strategically designed to harness sea currents and winds over time in order to evenly distribute a large mass of sand along a stretch of quickly eroding coast. More than just an earthworks feature, Zandmotor is a sand machine designed to create wider beaches and new coastal recreational areas over time. Atelier NL's natural glassware created from the Zandmotor honors the stunning narrative of the Dutch coastline over time and the origins of the Netherlands via the sea, currents, winds, rivers, and the creativity of humankind.

About the Zandmotor

A key location for their excavation and analysis experiments is the Zandmotor, a pilot near Kijkduin (The Hague)  that uses the principles of 'Building with Nature', an initiative of the provincie Zuid-Holland and Rijkswaterstaat. In cooperation with artist collective Satellietgroep and their network of scientists, the designers learned the story behind the new coastal landscape. Zandmotor was built in 2011 mainly Pleistocene  sands of the North Sea-bed, from the time when mammoths walked around on this location. The innovative project aims to generate new knowledge in times of climate change and sea level rise for our future coastal protection. A special note: Zandmotor is the only area outside the dike exposed to the tides that is built to change and even assimilate around 2030 in sea, beach and dunes.

Dancing with Glass

The unique process of glassblowing from local sands could be compared to that of a dance, and is equally as captivating and beautiful. A rhythm is formed with the molten glass as the glassblower spins the substance on the end of the blowpipe, manipulating it until it is in the perfect shape to be placed into a mold and blown into, thereby creating the form of the final object. Once the mold is released, the glassblower continues to twirl the molded glass on the end of the blowpipe as it cools. The final seal is made with an Atelier NL stamp that indicates the sand’s origin. Once stamped, the glass objects are placed in a cooling kiln, which prevents them from breaking or cracking as the temperature of the material cools and hardens.