The stuff that real soup is made of…

Not so very long ago there was a land called Terra Vulgaris, a country that inhabited a nomansland, divided by a burning fence. On one side of the fence lived a bunch of so called graphic designers. They called themselves The Tribe. On the other side of the fence lived a community of rare professionals, the advertising men, usually called The Herd. The Tribe lived in caves of obvious obscurity. They were fed by personal obsessions. The Herd had settled in tents of behaviour and response. They whispered confessions of enterprise and profit and sometimes they did this out loud.

One sunny day The Tribe and The Herd woke up, looked outside their caves and tents, and had to admit that something had changed inside the landscape. What happened? It … it was the fence … the fence between … their arena’s of performance which had… disappeared!

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This fence, named ‘the vanity of the day’, had vanished so completely that it’s absense echoed through the sky, through the day and through the night into and onto every gathered mind. As soon as The Tribe and The Herd came back to their senses they became aware of a second mayor change.

What had used to be a nomansland seemed to be invaded by a large group of so called people: The Audience, alias The Flock. The very existence of this species seemed to have a fertilising effect on the nomansland. According to this effect the nomansland rose violently out of it’s 2 dimensional sleep and turned into a multimedia playground for the restless minds and the followers of style and fashion.

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The Flock were living inside smart carts of public opinions. They seemed to be on a mission for meaning. Unarmed, unashamed, unauthorised and unabridged, with hyperlinks and pix.

That morning The Tribe came out of it’s cold closed circuits of bohemian arrogance to watch and look and see The Flock. At the same moment The Herd had stepped out of it’s impatient standard strategies to feel and hear the news. Immediately after these moments The Flock started to move in and out of the nomansland, back and forth into the domains of The Herd and The Tribe. It was there that they picked out the ingredients they liked and that seemed to matter most for them: a bit of concept and a byte of craft were mixed with spicy type and layout, image, identity and ideas and smashed into a huge melting pot that was called The Bowl.

The Flock started to stirr and mixing all these messages, meanings and tools made The Bowl start to boil. When after a while the soup was ready and The Flock had tasted it one of them stepped out of the crowd and said: Ah, this tastes like interaction and like dialogue too!

The Tribe and The Herd didn’t want to stay behind. Together they wanted to gain the trust and the attention of The Flock and did this by shouting and mourning: this asks for transformation and a little insight too!

The Flock was not impressed, nor amused, by the sighs of The Herd and The Tribe, but they stood still for a moment. Then suddenly they handed their cups to The Herd and The Tribe so that they could eat from this spicy substance too. As they swallowed the soup their heads became red like hell and they all sweated like crazy. Then there was a devastating silence… followed by an outbreak of chaotic cries and laughter that ended in: this tastes like inspiration!

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This sound evoked a response in The Flock, who seemed to be obliged by the newfound conceptual awareness of The Herd and The Tribe. The taste of the soup had served as a center which organised the efforts of The Tribe, The Herd and The Flock into a new direction.

And so it happened that Terra Vulgaris became furnished with new sorts of relationships between meaning and understanding, between users, visitors and trespassers and between The Tribe, The Herd and The Flock.

The new replenished land took shape around The Bowl, founded a personal tone of voice and got a consequent appearance. Of course I can’t tell you where it is, as it is a small sinfull secret that hides between discipline, idea and creation. It’s tasty and of course your mamma can do better than that, but if you climb high enough onto the peaks of nomansland you will find the big picture … But beware … and remember … that Terra Vulgaris is the stuff that real dreams are made of … just like soup, and that is why it is a story that should never be told … if you do not belong to The Tribe, The Herd or The Flock.


Huub Koch (Rotterdam, 1956) studied Visual Communication at the Willem de Kooning Academy (Netherlands) and the Hochschule für Gestaltung (Germany). He is a visual strategist, creative designer, design philosopher, blogger, vlogger, book reviewer, speaker and essayist. Koch debuted in 1975 as a poet, serialist and prosaist. He was active as stage designer, documentary photographer, visual artist and as a design entrepreneur. As a publicist in his field he contributed on: ‘The Education of a Typographer’, ‘Flyerdam’, ‘Web-TV’, En dan nu de Polonaise, Beweging in de zaak’ and ‘Ontdek Vloggen’. Since 2015 he writes essays for literary magazine Extaze. As a ‘happy’ widower, he finds his joy in every mode of ‘the art of living’ that makes his heart beat faster. Currently writing two books, and yes that is ‘the start of something new’.


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