Philip Cronerud is an art director, and publisher from Stockholm, Sweden, who works within technology, art and typography. Philip used to work for agencies like Wieden+Kennedy, Printed Pages / It’s Nice That and later his own type-foundry MEDIUMEXTRABOLD®. The lure of a job offer in the Bay Area convinced him to move and embrace a Californian lifestyle.
A few years ago, the Volkskrant (one of the countries biggest newspaper) moved office to a new location. Their old headquarter now houses hundreds of artists and musician; along with dance studios, a bar/club with panorama over the city, a dreadlock 'doctor', a Russian cultural centre, a cyberpunk gallery and my photo studio on the 4th floor. It was a conscious choice by the founders to create a total melting pot. In the basement for example, 3 doors away from our music studio, you will find some cheerful weed smoking hiphop producers from the Bijlmer (the 'ghetto' of Amsterdam); an ex-yougoslavian hardcore drummer with a full analogue recording studio and a ballet school run by an obese woman in her 70's. Ok, it might seem artificial, but it really is quite magical!
Hidden in the greenery near Westerpark, the perfect hideaway from street noise can be found if you know where to look: a little farm called "De Buurtboerderij". Surrounded by a bunch of sheep and a happily decorated garden, the restaurant inside serves one fixed menu a week for a low price. The farm serves as community center as well and is run by volunteers — and you when you eat there! — and there are plenty of sweet people and animals to hang out with.
Almost every underground station in Amsterdam has a fascinating story behind it. My favourite one is metro station ‘Weesperplein,’ because it has a hidden station underneath the actual station that was meant for the 'Singellijn.' However, that line was never build and the second station remained useless. Besides that the hidden station was also equipped to serve as a shelter during the cold war. The large doors that were meant to hermetically close the building are still visible at both ends of the platform. Other small details, like the panels in the ceiling than can be used as tables when turned around, are also silent references to the building’s former use.
I've always been inspired by old industrial buildings like factories, but unfortunately such buildings have become rather rare in the Netherlands. At the moment you can still find some of the remains of the old harbour of Amsterdam called the ‘NDSM werf’ on the other side of the river ‘IJ,’ but this area seems to be in transition as well. For the time being the NDSM werf is a creative place where a lot of activities are taking place. The best part for me is the 'Y-helling' to enjoy the (modest) skyline of Amsterdam and to write graffiti.