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Amber Veel project

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Mantle and Tanning Studies: Shell

It was in Amber Veel’s previous occupation as a nurse that she developed a fascination for skin, and this became her subject of research while studying at the Textile Department of the Gerrit Rietveld Academy. After graduating, she developed various craft techniques and became a skilled taxidermist.

For Tanning Studies, Veel developed several methods for preserving skin. The result is an archive of material studies on the vegetal tanning agents of plants and trees and a collection of tanned protein shells and silks. Mantle explores the meaning and value of wearing animal skins in other cultures. Through her case study on Inuit customs, she discovered how their hunting traditions, with its rituals and habits, are the result of survival and self-reliance. Their hunting rituals and, in particular, using the skin of the hunted animal has the cultural function of respecting the animal and the environment. The animal’s skin is carefully preserved and, with great craftsmanship, made into a traditional garment. Through this practice, the Inuit pay posthumous tribute to the hunted, and by wearing the garment, they become one with the animal. Inspired by her research and with the desire to experience the ritual, Veel made a special mantle out of rabbit furs.

Amber Veel

Topics Project

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Year of Birth
1981 (Alkmaar, The Netherlands)

Hogeschool Inholland, Gerrit Rietveld Academy

Company Name
Taxidermic Laboratory by Amber Veel

Artist/Autonomous Designer

Work Address
Sint Pancras, The Netherlands


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Critical People
Eric Bruseker, Dita Veel, Hilde en Janna Meeus, Yvonne van Amerongen, Susanne Kat, Marieke Schoonderbeek

Meeus, Bonthuis Bergen

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