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Interview with Studio Job

“Studio Job is at the forefront of a renaissance of the applied arts.”

Art and design collective: Job Smeets & Nynke Tynagel

Stained glass window at The Jane © Eric Kleinberg

In 2000, Nynke and Job embarked on a creative journey that allowed them to collaborate with like-minded top brands from various segments. Since 2009, this art and design collective operates from Antwerp. About time to ask one half of this successful duo a few questions.

Job Smeets & Nynke Tynagel

When or how did the passion for art start with you?

‘Nynke and I both have a creative background. She comes from a family of graphic designers, her father was art director at the famous weaving mill ‘De Ploeg’. My father in turn was a painter, restorer, antique dealer and later property developer.’

What education did you receive?

‘Sometimes I wonder if I ever learned anything at school, but basically, both Nynke and I graduated from the famous Design Academy in Eindhoven, Nynke in graphic design and I more conceptual.’

When was the first moment you heard of Studio Job?

‘During my final exams, I already had a start-up. The name was ‘Oval’ and I had quite some success with nice industrial products and exhibitions. Yet I didn’t think it was ‘personal’ enough. I am convinced that a successful formula always has its own identity. After two years of ‘Oval’, a successful mission, I closed the door behind me and started a completely different and much more intrinsic project with Studio Job. That must have been in 1998.’

What is the difference between Studio Job and other similar enterprises?

‘That depends on which companies you are comparing with. Within the segment of art, design, fashion and architecture, we are special because of the broad scope and the many disciplines we work in. Studio Job works for multinationals such as Godiva and Land Rover, but we are also in the art segment with solo exhibitions in the world’s major capitals. Our work can be found in over 40 museums and our unique sculptures are regularly sold to major international art lovers.’

What were the key moments in your career?

‘The collaboration with Nynke in 2000. In addition, the many museum exhibitions and purchases have also been very important. Studio Job is actually at the cradle of a renaissance of the applied arts. Abroad, we are compared to the perfectionism of Jeff Koons and the business acumen of Damien Hirst.’

Wunderkammer, Swarovski Kristallwelten

Burj Khalifa (left) & Robber Baron Cabinet (right)

What are your personal ambitions for the future, for yourself and for Studio Job?

‘To reach perfection! Total perfection in all facets of the profession.’

Who influences you at the moment? Are there other artists you look up to?

‘Well, they are mostly deceased, but the aforementioned artists such as Hirst and Koons are our mirrors….’

What is your magnum opus?

‘That changes sometimes, but usually it’s the latter: so I go for ‘Studio Job Wunderroom’ for a museum in Innsbruck, a great installation!’

What brings you to rest?

‘Nothing, our life is our work.’

What is the best compliment you ever received?

‘That we are smart.’

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