Anja Groten is an independent designer and researcher based in Amsterdam. Investigating the possibilities of frictional encounters as part of design practice, Anja designs collective moments of critical making, aimed at discussion, confrontation and contingency. Anja works on (self-)commissions and besides tutors at the Design Department of the Sandberg Instituut, and the Design Academy Eindhoven. In 2013 Anja co-founded the initiative Hackers & Designers, attempting to break down the barriers between the two fields by enforcing a common vocabulary through education, hacks and collaboration.
In autumn of 2017 Anja joins the PhD Arts doctorate programme focussing on Critical Making.,

Collaboration and collective modes of production are essential for my design practice. Working independently allows me to build and engage with different communities and collectives. I work on–self-initiated as well as commissioned projects.

For 3 years I co-organized De PUNT, a collective art and project space in the east of AmsterdamDe PUNT has been also the home base of Hackers & Designers, an initiative I founded with Selby and James in July 2013. Hackers & Designers organizes monthly meet-ups and encounters with technologies and makers, aiming to bring the two professions closer to each other to create a common vocabulary. In the summer of 2015 H&D launched a summer academy program for the first time–the H&D Summer Academy.

Other collaborators are André, Chris, HeerkoJanneke, Jeannette, Joel, Leanne, LéoMaartje, m–d buero, Ruben, Thomas, Casco, Read-in, Sjoerd, Yolande, The Center for Genomic Gastronomy.

Anja Groten – Design & Research
Haparandadam 7 – Studio D5
1012 AK, Amsterdam


Identity for local food market

Visual identity for STACH food – an Amsterdam-based supermarket chain selling high quality ready-made meals made by exclusively local suppliers. In collaboration with Chris Lee. Amsterdam 2011

Visual identity & online archive

The website of Perdu functions as an online archive as well as an agenda for current events and news of poetry stage and book store. In collaboration with Joel Galvez. Amsterdam 2014

Feest van Veranderingen

Stencil printed posters/flyers for Perdu, Amsterdam 2014

Hunger for Trade, web doc

Project website and interactive research platform of Hunger for Trade, an international theatre network that explores the problems and perspectives of the global food market. The website enabled the SchauSpielHaus Hamburg together with 8 theatres and artist teams in Belgium, Brazil, Burkina Faso, England, India, Romania, South Africa and Switzerland to cooperate in assembling research material and developing performative strategies to establish an artistic discourse on the future of food in its global context. In collaboration with Systemantics. Hamburg 2013.

Vocal search engine

Machina Recordatio contains interviews of elderly people elderly homes in Hamburg, Berlin and Dresden. It is an interactive database of advise that gives you the possibility to ask those who really know. Apart from holding what will no longer exist Machina Recordatio carries these voices to the public space. See also my talk at about Machina at The Society of the Query. Berlin 2012-2013


Extrapool Augmented Audiotour

Promotional print material for a GPS-based sound walk through the city of Nijmegen. Initiated by Extrapool and Hear us Here

The Innocent Abroad


The Innocent Abroad: Editorial design for artist Jasper de Beijer, published in 2012 on the occasion of the following exhibitions: Asya Geisberg Gallery, New York, 2012, Galerie Nouvelles Images, The Hague, 2012, TZR Galerie Kai Brückner, Düsseldorf, 2012, The Empire Project, Istanbul, 2013
Edition of 800 copies
Lithography / Printing: NPN Drukkers, Breda
Binding: Van Mierlo, Nijmegen
Publishers: Galerie Nouvelles Images99 Uitgevers/Publishers


Talk with… Alternative currency

The time-based currency was introduced to encourage students of the Sandberg design department to engage in a more active intellectual exchange outside of their regular classes. The Sandberg Design Department Currency was featured on, in Étapes: Design and Visual Culture, winter issue, Memefest, festival for radical communication and The Mobile Museum, Luxembourg. Amsterdam 2010-2011

Versus – Discussing populism


Versus – A discussion between Folk and Elite was initiated by Sandberg design department students to address the growing development of populist public speech in the Netherlands. The editorial design, developed in collaboration with Brigiet van den Berg and Simona Kicurovska proposes the concept of diverse shades of grey of a layered debate, as opposed to black and white, polarized and one-dimensional hate speech. Amsterdam 2010

The Invisible Operators

The Invisible Operators is a speculative manifestation that was developed at the Sandberg Institute. The publication describes a post-squatting scenario by proposing a new social movement that defines itself by it’s absence. ‘The Manifestation of the Invisible Operators’ was featured in Questions/Questions, edited by Charlotte Cheetham, «Print Magazine», A Report from a Place Formerly Known as Graphic Design, by Rick Poynor and Tokyo Graphic Design Passport presented by Annelys de Vet, Arts Chiyoda, Tokyo