Art Exhibition By Day, Campsite By Night

If you have been around Amsterdam’s Science Park lately, you might have noticed some strange, space-themed structures out there. What has been dubbed as The Art of Tech-Living is Amsterdam’s Urban Campsite, currently in its third edition and based in the ICT and biology area of the Science Park.

Supported by various art and science funds, the project is an art exhibition by day, and a campsite by night. Various architects, artists and creatives have come together to create the most extravagant pieces of art, which are all designed in such a way that they function as a hotel room at night.

The Urban Campsite is a traveling project which combines art and science, and this year’s theme features 13 sleeping objects. Whether it is the star-loving research and sleeping lab Labour Fou, a re-used waste container or a capsule, in which previously young calves slept – the possibilities to spend the night are far from ordinary on this urban campsite.

Annette van Driel and Francis Nijenhuis run the Urban Campsite together with a team of mostly international volunteers, who do everything from maintenance work, showing guests around, checking them in and firing up the pizza oven and hot tub. The campsite itself is a small circular economy, with much of it running on solar energy and a sanitation system that can function independently off the grid. The plant itself provides compost toilets, showers, compost reservoirs and septic tanks – all of which make up for a self-sufficient system of compost and purified water for the plants that grow on the site.

Whether you are living in Amsterdam or not, spending a night on the Urban Campsite feels like a one-day vacation away from the bustle of the big city — while the centre of Amsterdam is just a 8-minute train ride away. While usually fully booked during the weekend, the campsite is open for everyone visit during the day during all of July and August this year. Bookings are made via Airbnb — although spending a night here will probably surpass all of your previous Airbnb experiences and make them feel a lot more ordinary.