Rombout Frieling

Rombout makes matter move man: he finds his energy in creating the structures to put things in motion that move us on all levels. Literally, by creating SIDDLE and FLUPPER – a new way of moving ourselves vertically - now commercialised by a Forbes2000 corporation. Conceptually, by co-founding IKAWA, nominated global social venture 2011, using digitalisation to democratise the coffee industry. And now visionarily, by launching OPENLIGHT as a creative lab concretising the cultural revolution of digital LED lighting to come.

Rombout is creative chair and program head for OPENLIGHT and board member of the Intelligent Lighting Institute. His home is still in London, where he is design director for IKAWA and holds an innovation fellowship at the Royal College of Art (RCA).

Rombout holds an MA in design from the Royal College of Art and an engineering MSc from Imperial College London, next to studies in Philosophy and HCI at Stanford University.

Rombout also consults for various businesses and brands including Heineken, Nestlé and Proctor & Gamble.


Professor Kees Overbeeke (18/07/1952 - 08/10/2011)

Kees Overbeeke studied psychology at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium (Ma 1974). After working there, he moved to the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering at the Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands, where he gained his PhD (1988) on spatial perception on flat screens. He headed the group of Form Theory as Associate Professor until his move to the Department of Industrial Design of the TU/e in 2002. During the 2005-2006 academic year he was Distinguished Nierenberg Chair at Design CMU Pittsburgh, USA. In 2006 he was appointed full professor at TU/e. He established and until 2011 headed the Designing Quality in Interaction group (DQI). Kees (co-) initiated several new subjects in design research: design and emotion, funology, aesthetics of interaction, rich interaction and design and ethics.

He published extensively on these subjects in journals, books and conference papers. He was keynote speaker, and member of the scientific committee, of several international conferences, and has been plenary speaker at CHI 2009 in Boston, USA. He was also editor and member of the editorial board of several leading international design journals.

Recently he turned back to his old passion: light an perception through light. The way light is structured by the environment through reflection and interference creates opportunities for designers to enrich the world we live in both through functional and poetic applications. He (co)initiated OPENLIGHT and participated actively in its development.

It was with great sadness that on 8 october 2011 Kees unexpectedly passed away. 


Jacob Alkema

Designer, researcher and artist Jacob Alkema produces light forms and develops new materials. New light applications, new techniques and new materials are a trademark for his work. The light forms are always handmade, in a small serie or single pieces. The developed materials are often lightweight, the production techniques are developed by implementation of technomimicry (borrowing techniques form other disciplines). Although technical development and material application are important, these definitely do not lead the design process. The (light) effects, the experience and the radiation of atmosphere are paramount.

For this reason the motto of Jacob Alkema is: “a design is excellent when the new created forms exceeds your imagination”.

Jacob Alkema lives and works in Utrecht. Besides studying in Rotterdam and Utrecht he studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York. After several years of experience as designer and design manager, he started his own design firm in 2004.

At OPENLIGHT, Jacobs leads the opening of the spectrum of light. 


Vic Teeven

Vic has a background in electronics and started 40 years ago for Philips in Eindhoven. In the first decade he worked on TV systems at Consumer Electronics  and then moved to a semiconductor project (memories) in Philips Research. When Philips stopped the memory business in the early nineties, he became responsible for the HDTV studio. Roughly ten years later Vic took on the responsibility to build, realise and manage the Philips Experience Labs (HomeLabs). 

In ExperienceLab new concepts and systems from research are tested with users in a very early stage. Behavioral experts conduct user studies and use the results  to improve the original ideas. In the shop area innovative lighting concepts are tested on retailers, in the home area on consumers. And in the sleep area the effect of light on sleep is studied.
Due to expected changes in lighting for homes and public places like offices, shops, hotels, hospitals, many projects study this theme in this Lab. And lighting control became one of the major parts of the infrastructure, important  for researchers to hook on their prototypes.

Vic retired in 2010 from Philips and in 2011 he continued his role as lab manager at OPENLIGHT.