Studio Job - Architectural Digest – Rolf’s Apartment

Studio Job was founded in 1998 by Job Smeets in the renaissance spirit, combining traditional and modern techniques to produce once-in-a-lifetime objects. At once highly specific and yet entirely universal, personally expressive and yet experimental, Studio Job has crafted a body of work that draws upon classical, popular and contemporary design and highly visual and sculptural art.



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04 August 2021

Studio Job’s latest interior project for Rolf Snoeren of Viktor and Rolf in Architectural Digest

Amusement parks are for the young. At least that’s the conventional wisdom. Job Smeets, however, has never put away childish things. For the founder of Studio Job, the provocative product-design firm, youthful recollections of Efteling—the largest theme park in the Netherlands—form the DNA of his defiantly kitsch creations. Imagine an armchair in the form of a ham-burger, a punching bag that appears to be made of red brick, and a table lamp that mimics a half-peeled banana. “If I can visualize those memories, I can explore new shapes and forms,” explains Smeets, who launched Studio Job, headquartered in the Dutch city of Tilburg, in 1998; it also has an outpost in Milan and is now represented by New York City gallery R & Company. “Not everybody needs to live in a modernist white box.”


That would include Rolf Snoeren, one half of Viktor & Rolf, the Amsterdam fashion house famed for surrealistic haute couture that would not look out of place in Efteling’s mock castle. “We try not to lose the inner child,” he explains of his and creative partner Viktor Horsting’s fantastical ensembles. “What they do in fashion,” Smeets responds, “I do in design.” The couturier’s American husband, Brandon O’Dell, the director of the Amsterdam Dinner Foundation, an NGO focused on the global fight against AIDS, calls the designers “cosmic brothers.” Born on the same day and in the same year, Snoeren and Smeets grew up only about 12 miles apart and likely crossed paths at Efteling, though they didn’t meet until they were in their 20s and working as interns at the same company in Paris. Snoeren also happens to be the godfather of Elvis, Smeets’s toddler son with art and design consultant Rebecca Sharkey. So when he and O’Dell purchased a penthouse in an 1890s former bank building on Keizersgracht, or Emperor’s Canal, Smeets was the only name on their short list, even though he’s conjured only a handful of interiors. “It’s not really something Job does,” Snoeren observes of the designer. “He makes things. But when we were talking about the apartment, he said, ‘I can do this.’ ”


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