- 1 Cultural Diversity
- 1.1 Amy Suo Wu
- 1.2 Gabriel Fontana
- 1.3 Teana Boston-Mammah
- 1.4 Julie Boschat Thorez
- 1.5 Yin Yin Wong
- 1.6 Pablo Lerma
- 1.7 Zoénie Liwen Deng
- 2 New Earth
- 3 Powerplay
- 3.1 Golnar Abbasi
- 3.2 Charissa Granger
- 3.3 Rosa Pons-Cerdà
- 3.4 Bruno Setola
- 3.5 Seecum Cheung
- 3.6 Lila Athanasiadou
- 4 Collective/Assembly
- 5 Publishing/Archiving
- 6 Research Lector
- 7 Program Head
- 8 Links
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Currently, Social Practices is comprised of 4 different research strands (as described below), translated into courses. These fields of inquiry change over time.
+ CULTURAL DIVERSITY explores notions of identity and how it can be embodied, influenced, sedimented, or experienced across cultural, economic, political, and social lines.
+ POWERPLAY focuses on understanding the norms that govern institutions, human behavior, and representations of power, searching for ways to subvert dominant (visual) narratives.
+ NEW EARTH questions sustainability paradigms like the circular economy and researches equitable design and art practices in the wake of climate change.
+ GHOST MINOR This course is under construction and peer review and coming soon. ----------------->>>>>> Working Title -------->>>>>> COLLECTIVE/ASSEMBLY experiments with un/learning how to work, study, make, share, circulate, and be, together. And nourishes new forms of physical/digital assembly that destabilize dominance. And reimagines habits of sharing/solidarity. And disrupts mechanisms that reproduce precarity/toxicity. And enacts experimental/ethical ways of making public. Slash, and, et cetera.Below, you can find more information about our teachers and staff.
Amy Suo Wu
Practice, years 4-2
Lecture: Tactics and Poetics of Invisibility https://vimeo.com/241503663
An artist, designer, and researcher
Since 2015, she has engaged in steganographic practices such as hiding techniques, evasion tactics, and covert communication as acts of protection, survival and resistance in the face of oppression and violence. This research is now published under the title A Cookbook of Invisible Writing through Onomatopee. Her most recent interest and practice circles around literal and metaphorical approaches of mending, design as remittance and self-fulfilling prophecy and how text and textile might be woven together to form embodied publishing.
Wu has co-organised the annual zine festival Zine Camp in Rotterdam between 2014-2019. From 2013-2016, she co-ran Eyesberg, a graphic design studio motivated by conceptual and experimental approaches. She was awarded the Grant programme for Talent Development from Creative Industries Fund NL, as well as two studio residences at I: project space in Beijing and ZKU in Berlin. Recent solo and group exhibitions have been held at Artspace Ideas Platform, Sydney; Drugo More, Croatia; Aksioma – Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana; Seoul Mediacity Biennale; Espace Multimédia Gantner, France; and I: project space Beijing. She is currently a tutor and graduation supervisor at Experimental Publishing at Piet Zwart Institute and practice teacher in Cultural Diversity at Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam.
Practice, years 3–1
Gabriel Fontana is a social designer who investigates systems of value, norms and knowledge production. By understanding the body as a learning tool, his design practice investigates how our bodies perform, internalise and reproduce social norms. He proposes ways that this can be unlearnt through new pedagogies, activities and actions to imagine and introduce new value systems.
Sport and physical education have been his main field of research for the past three years. In this context, Gabriel develops alternative team sport games that position Physical Education as queer pedagogy. His work is applied both in daily social settings (e.g. primary schools, sport clubs) and academic contexts as well as in cultural institutions (e.g. BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht; Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht). He graduated cum laude from the Design Academy Eindhoven (NL) with a master’s in Social Design and holds a bachelor’s degree from Saint-Etienne Higher School of Art and Design (FR). His work has been awarded by the multiple design prizes (Rotterdam New Talent Award 2018, Paris Design Forum 2018) and diverse design grants (Stimuleringsfonds, CityLab10 and CBK Rotterdam).
Theory, years 4-3-2
She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology at Essex University (UK) and a Master of Urban Studies and Public Policy at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. She is particularly interested in notions of identity in an urban context. The first ten years of her career she worked as a teacher of sociology in London. In the Netherlands, she went on to develop her research and policy advising skills. She worked for over eleven years as a policy advisor/researcher for Scala, a non-profit expertise center for gender and diversity, in Rotterdam. Research areas include: the glass ceiling, emancipation in Rotterdam, radicalisation, fatherhood, sexual diversity and gendered social contacts patterns.
From 2012 she has worked as a consultant and researcher for various organisations in Rotterdam, Formaat, Het Peutercollege and the research center Creating 010. In her free time Teana organises, as co-founder of the foundation RotterdamINK, various events, in the context of women’s empowerment issues. Teana is a board member of various nonprofits. Her research on gender and social contact theory in a neighbourhood in South Rotterdam is via Emerald publishers accessible and called “Women and the Gender Gap”.
Julie Boschat Thorez
Theory/Practice, year 4
Collective website : https://varia.zone Personal website : https://i-need-to-work-on-it.com
A researcher and occasional media artist/designer
Julie Boschat Thorez is a researcher and artist whose work focuses on knowledge organisation systems and the stories which can be extracted from them. She primarily investigates archives, collections, datasets, and other types of ensembles, with an interest for variability, circulation, community and access. Her practice materialises in installations, performed lectures, printed matter or digital systems. Julie has been trained in Fine Arts at the ERG in Brussels and Media Design at the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam. She is also a member of Varia, a Rotterdam based initiative which aims at developing critical understandings of the technologies that surround us. Varia organises events, workshops experiments with tools for building physical and digital infrastructures in a collective way.
Yin Yin Wong
Practice, years 3-1
A designer, publisher, and sometimes artist
As director of Publication Studio Rotterdam she expands on publishing as a social form and new economical model, as co-organiser of Tender Center she hosts LGBTQI+ communities in Rotterdam and both within her autonomous as well as her applied practice, she deals with questions surrounding ownership, agency, circulation and dissemination of (visual) culture in relationship to public space. Social sculpture, public intervention and publishing are some of the methods used to instigate these questions.
Theory, years 3-2-1
An image-based artist, researcher, and publisher
Develops visual work at the intersection of image & text with a focus in visual archives and vernacular materials that deal with the concepts of time, erosion, identity and counter-narrative, taking various forms from photographic installations to publications. His work has been exhibited at PhotoEspaña (ES), The Finnish Museum of Photography (FI), Flowers Gallery (US), Konstanet (EE), Centro Huarte (ES), New York University (US), Fotoweek D.C. (US), SCAN International Festival of Photography (ES), La Fábrica (ES), and Fundació Foto Colectania (ES) among others.
His publications are in collections including the Guggenheim Museum (US), Museum of Modern Art – MoMA (US), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art - SFMoMA (US), Aeromoto (MX), Centro de la Imagen (MX), School of the Art Institute of Chicago (US), and the International Center of Photography in New York (US), among others. He is been selected for Pla(t)form FotoMuseum Winterthur and nominated for the First Book Award MACK Editions (UK), Critical Mass (US), and PDN 30 ́s (US).
Runs the publishing house Meteoro Editions. A platform to create art publications with a focus on projects that deal with vernacular photography, archives, utopias and fictional representations of the world.
Zoénie Liwen Deng
Theory, year 4
A researcher, co-learner, curator, poet
Since 2015, she has been researching non-oppositional social practices, with a focus on China. She graduated from the University of Amsterdam in 2020 as a PhD, with a dissertation entitled: Be Water, My Friend: The Non-Oppositional Criticalities of Socially Engaged Art in Urbanising China. Since 2019, she has been looking into self-organised practices in southern China, with reference to the practices in Southeast Asia. She also explores the possibilities in feminism, compassion, anarchism, communitarianism, otherwise ways of living and learning together, non-western cosmologies, and the decolonial. She worked as a project coordinator in Shanghai Biennale in 2012, and she co-curated Academy of Failure (multidisciplinary workshop) in Institute of Provocation in Beijing in 2018. She also curated the first session of School in Common in Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons (Utrecht) in 2019. She was the secondary grantee of the Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Greater China Research Grant 2019–2020 (in Asian Art Archive). She is a contributor to art media such as Leap and Artforum China, and she writes semi-ekphrastic poems online on a daily basis.
Theory/Practice, years 4-1
A transition designer
Gaspard calls himself 'a relationship therapist for people and things' or 'a transition designer'. His self-appointed mission for sustainable design and entrepreneurial and empirical attitude have led him to see the contradictions that the sustainability paradigm holds and subsequently to research the philosophical notions that underpin this modern human predicament. His parents being physicists sparked his fascination with technology which he explored at TU Delft to later recognize its implication in neo-liberal society. Of late this fascination has had him diving into the coding of machine learning algorithms while at the same time considering their ethical repercussions. While he chooses to work on self initiated projects/ventures, often in the field of circular economy that propose alternatives to traditional forms of business, these projects increasingly form the soil for a more contemplative practice; for example investigating the socio-cultural conditions of child-rearing in the west and questioning the nature-culture dichotomies that dominate the discourse around child-rearing and parenthood.
In New Earth, Gaspard teaches storytelling in which he uses theory of structural linguistics and material semiotic analysis to help the students come up with narratives for a new earth. When he's not teaching he works on Good Fashion Friend, a startup that helps people create secondhand and vintage wardrobes using online tools. To balance out all this serious stuff he also makes music, goes dancing, bouldering, meditates, does yoga, loves to play board/card games with friends and seeks out nature.
Theory/Practice, years 3-2-1
Fascinated by societal sustainability I am interested in unusual, new materials and how I can manipulate those. By means of combining technology, art and science, I show how art can contribute to a strategy of sustainable development. Since graduating in 2013 I have focused on understanding, controlling and manipulating unusual materials. In projects such as Filter Factory (2013) and Leek Packaging (2017), I have explored the possibilities of using waste streams to create new opportunities. Since 2015 I have been combining waste streams such as overdue foods with new, promising technologies in synthetic biology. This resulted in projects like The Art of Deception and The Meat Project. Within my work I combine different media, using techniques and media tools either to experiment and document or to strengthen the message with video and visual images.
Theory/Practice, year 4
An (an-)architect, curator, and freezone organizer
Initiates, develops, curates, writes and teaches about transition in relation to art, design, architecture, public space and economy. She is interested in the commons and at the moment develops EnergieKas - a rooftop greenhouse that both generates energy and functions as a tropical community garden and testing ground for regenerative design. She also co-runs Langebeesten Energiek, a cooperation for a climate friendly old city centre in The Hague. There she developed Paardenkracht, a community owned solar energy cooperation.
Next to her own practice she teaches ‘New Earth‘ at WdKA. Here she initiated Beyond Social, a collaborative research and publishing platform on social design, was involved in curriculum innovation regarding Spatial Design, Sustainability and New Earth and coördinated the Social Practices for some years. Earlier she worked as an (an-)architect on the development of various self-organized freezones, including the NDSM terrain in Amsterdam and Grote Pyr in The Hague. She co-developed several public art projects including the Laboratory for the Interim and the prize-winning interactive installation Between Realities, the Dutch contribution for Prague Quadrennial 2015. As a writer/editor she was involved in S+RO, Archined, Ruimtevolk and the publication Hotel Transvaal, Stedelijke Transformatie in the Tussentijd / Between Times.
Theory/Practice, years 4–3-2
A postcapitalist designer, commoning researcher, and climate justice organiser
I work at the intersections of creative production, radical politics and ecological transition. I specialise in strategic communications, community building and making social transformation irresistible. I helped develop the framework for “Climate Games”, a transmedia action-adventure event enabling peer-to-peer disobedience and Shell Must Fall, a grassroots campaign targeting shareholder meetings of the carbon major. I am among the initiators of the shared social housing projects NieuwLand, a postcapitalist urban commune, and de Nieuwe Meent, a cooperative entirely organised around the principles of commoning. I am graduating from my PhD in Cultural Analysis at UvA, on commoning practices in postcapitalist design. I am currently a BAK 2020 Fellow researching intersectional tools for political activation. People say I'm usually good at starting but quite bad at finishi——
Theory, years 3-2
An artist/architect, researcher, and publisher
Her work consists of a hybrid of practices such as research, writing, curating, organising, independent publishing, teaching, making, and spatial intervention. She is a founder and editor of Sarmad, a platform dedicated to politics of image and practices of image-making; and a co-founder of the collective of cognitarians/makers WORKNOT! devoted to discuss precarities of living practices today through spatial interventions as well as research. Her work is also concerned with notion(s) of spatiality, coloniality, practices of resistance, and construction of histories. Her work has been shown in Venice Biennale of Architecture, Sharjah Architecture Triennial, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Architecture Banal, among others.
She holds a Masters degree from The Berlage and has been in residence at Jan van Eyck Academie in Maastricht. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Faculty of Architecture and Urban Environment, TU Delft, where she conducts her academic project on politics of domesticity. She teaches at Willem de Kooning Academie (Social Practices), Piet Zwart Instituut (MIARD), and the Faculty of Architecture at TU Delft, along with exploring experimental pedagogical practices within the framework of Sarmad.
Theory, years 4-1
A musician and musicologist
Dr. Charissa Arlette Granger is a Marie Skłodowska Curie Post-Doctoral LEaDing Fellow at the Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Concentrating on Afro-Caribbean and diasporic music-making practices, Charissa is interested in decoloniality, how music enables sensuous knowledge, and decolonial aesthetics and epistemologies. After completing a bachelor’s in visual and performing arts at Northern Illinois University (USA) with a focus on cultural studies and steelpan performance, and a master’s in cultural musicology at The University of Amsterdam, Charissa focused on world music performance practice, attending to how otherness is framed at world music festivals as a doctoral research project at the University of Göttingen (Germany).
Practice, years 3-2-1
A filmmaker and game designer
She is at the moment involved in research on images as pollution (how subliminal messages misrepresent, influence and alter our sensitivity); in the design of a digital taxonomy of visual language; in exploring the qualities of blended learning for decolonizing courses. To give back what she has learned, she brings her experience into workshops and learning methods within the frame of intersectionality. Her work craves for communicating and educating to promote civic responsibility. Director of documentaries for social justice and for archiving peoples memories (TV3, TVE2, Via Digital, Canal+, Radio Televisao Portuguesa); curator of DobleClick, a European Student's Film Festival organized without hierarchies, where students were giving workshops about their practices and experimentation (2010-2015) ; lecturer at Universitat de Vic, Barcelona (2005-2016), researcher in academic innovation groups (CIFE-GI and AQUID, 2009-2013). Her studies cover a range of disciplines: graduate in Philology (UAB, 1994), in Media (EMAV, 1995), postgraduate in Actor’s Direction (URL, 2002), master in Writing for Cinema and Television (URL, 2008), all in Barcelona; and “updated” in Design and Development of Games for Learning (Edx, 2016).
Practice, year 4
A game thinker
Bruno is the founder of Playspace, a company which invites people to re-imagine the rules, roles and goals that govern their daily lives. The goal is always to discover fresh and surprising new perspectives that can lead to inventing more engaging and balanced ways to work, live and learn together. Bruno advises on how to use this approach to improve participatory processes like decision-making and co-creation. He also teaches Powerplay and hosts Urban Playwalks.
Practice, years 4-1
A filmmaker and artist
Her current work is an ongoing series of films based upon interviews and encounters initiated by the artist with leading specialists in the field of right-wing radicalism, human rights and activist groups, politicians, and affected citizens. Recent films include extensive interviews on the rise of the far-right in Germany, with political journalist and writer Richard Cooke & SBS Public Broadcasters (Interview with Lennart, 2016); coverage of the Dutch elections with writer, musician, broadcaster and curator Morgan Quaintance (The Dutch Window, 2017); a study towards the inequalities found within cancer care treatment, commissioned by NHS England in collaboration with equality and human rights charity brap (Inequalities of BAME patients Cancer Care Study, 2018-19), and most recently, the gentrification and total eviction of local residents and business owners within Cheung’s ancestral family village in Hubei, Shenzhen (Eviction in Shenzhen, 2019-ongoing).
Theory, Year 4,1
A cultural worker and a comrade
Lila Athanasiadou is a cultural worker with a background in architecture. Her work misreads and appropriates artistic, academic and architectural milieus exploring the ways our subjectivities are produced and structured as a result of both linguistic codes and spatial gestures. Her work takes form in writing, film, installation, podcasts, curatorial projects and pedagogical encounters. She investigates cultural phenomena weaving history with mythology, political philosophy with psychoanalysis, architectural theory and popular culture.
Theory, year 4
Theory, Year 2-1
semi-amateur architect, builder, historian, and bike mechanic— and professional bike messenger
Tomi has worked in various capacities within architecture— from supervising construction administration for medium size commercial projects, to facilitating the collaborative design of community spaces, to engaging directly in design-builds and as a builder in new-builds and renovations. Additionally they have worked as a historian, namely with the Chinatown Atlas, mapping the poltical-geographic history of Bostons’ Chinatown, and as an honors student within the Chair of Architectural History at TU Delft, tracing the built/social dimension of petrochemical relationships. Tomi holds a BFA in architecture from the Massachusetts College of Art, while partly studying at the University of New Mexico and the American University of Beirut; in addition to a MSc in Architecture from TU Delft— graduating on threads of squatting, unfixed collectives, love-making and the questioning of presumed knowledge claims. Tomi currently co-operates the well-established Doe-Het-Zelf Werkplaats in Rotterdam Noord, where they contribute mechanical, building and collective-attentive knowledges, skills and generosities. ~ Tomi is proudly unserious and kept busy encountering friends late into the darkness and mud; something they would call a politics of endurance and engagement. (Which they will tell you all about at somepoint, we are sure; convincing you of the importance of embracing our heteronomous/non-autonomous vulnerabilities, as the wounded, leaky and pourous historical creatures we are.) ~ If we had to summarize their design approach it would have to contain this unceasing urgency to cram as much love into a situation as possible; which they somehow believe is at the core of all this talk of commoning. xP
A media artist and researcher
Alice Strete is an artist and researcher interested in the intricate relationship between humans and the technologies they surround themselves with. Her work involves collaborative media art and publishing practices, and explores topics from women in technology to the socio-politics of food. She holds an MA in Experimental Publishing from the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam (2019).
An artist and media researcher
With a background in architecture, visual arts, and experimental publishing, my practice relates to topics around activation of public spaces, archives, voice, speech platforms ,and listening channels. I am an Architecture graduate of the University of Patras (2015) and a recent graduate of the Experimental Publishing Master at Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam (2019). I am part of Varia Zone and /etc.
http://www.ubermatic.org/ https://nachbarschaftsakademie.org/growing-from-the-ruins-of-modernity/ http://www.synsmaskinen.net/ https://bodynet.tumblr.com/
An educator, artist, and researcher
Born in Canada, Michelle Teran has a transdisciplinary practice and operates within the domains of contemporary art, community-based initiatives, academic research and activism. Her research areas encompass socially engaged and site-specific art, transmedia storytelling, counter-cartographies, social movements, urbanism, feminist practices, critical and radical pedagogies. Her multidisciplinary works span film, text, bookworks, performance, installation, public readings, online works, participatory events and interventions in public space. She completed her doctoral studies at the Bergen Academy of Art and Design (KHIB) within the Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowship Programme. “Future Guides: From Information to Home” is an artistic research project on following: how to practice and theorize following.
She has participated in conferences, performances, exhibitions and events in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, such as the Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), Transmediale Festival (Berlin), Ars Electronica (Linz), National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (Taichung), Museum Folkwang (Essen), Manchester Contemporary Art Gallery, Media Façades Festival (Helsinki), Mediations Biennale (Poznan), Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (Santiago), Today Art Museum (Bejing), Screen City Festival (Stavanger), Museum of Contemporary Art (Roskilde) Telemuseet (Oslo), Arco International Art Fair (Madrid), Tensta Konstall (Stockholm), Sonar Festival (Barcelona), ISEA, CCCB/MACBA (Barcelona), Moderna Museet (Stockholm), BEAP (Perth), Mois Multi Festival (Quebec City), and Mediacity (Seoul). She has given lectures, led workshops and masterclasses in academic institutions, such as Kunsthochschule für Medien Köln, Bauhaus Universität, Willem de Kooning academie, Kunsthøgskolen i Bergen, Trondheim Academy of Fine Art, Parsons Paris, Dance Unlimited, Vivalab and Lucerne University of Applied Science and Arts, where she worked with students coming from media and visual art, interactive design, dance and theatre.She is the winner of several awards, including the Transmediale Award, the Turku2011 Digital Media & Art Grand Prix Award, Prix Ars Electronica honorary mention and the Vida 8.0 Art & Artificial Life International Competition.
She participated in the artist-research group SYNSMASKINEN, an inquiry into 7 fields of contemporary political crisis. She is part of the Neighborhood Academy in Prinzessinnengarten, a self-organized open platform for urban and rural knowledge sharing, cultural practice and activism in a community garden in Berlin. Together with Marc Herbst she co-edited Everything Gardens! Growing from Ruins of Modernity, one of a three part publication (ADOCS and nGbK publishers) on how the global ecological crisis and its social repercussions raise questions regarding new forms of education. The English version of Ada Colau and Adrià Alemany's book Mortgaged Lives (original Spanish version Vidas Hipotecas) is a translation project initiated by Michelle Teran and published by the Journal of Aesthetics & Protest. The forthcoming publication Situationer Workbook / Situationer Cookbook brings together critical texts and practices of radical and transformative pedagogies by teachers, researchers, students and alumni of the Willem de Kooning Academy and Piet Zwart Institute. Formerly she held the position of Associate Professor Art & Technology at the Trondheim Academy of Fine Art at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. She is practice-oriented Research Professor Social Practices at Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam. She lives and works between Rotterdam and Berlin.
A cultural worker, grey literature publisher, and undisciplined researcherFrom 2010 to 2018, she articulated cultural programming with rural, peri-urban, and diasporic communities from the Philippines through the Office of Culture and Design, a residency space and social practice platform. In 2015, she co-founded Hardworking Goodlooking, a cottage industry publishing hauz interested in the material vernacular, collectivizing authorship, and the value of the error. Currently, she coordinates the Social Practices department at Willem de Kooning Academy and teaches in the Experimental Publishing masters of Piet Zwart Institute. Frequently, she operates under collective or individual aliases that intimate her service in a given project, the latest of which is To Be Determined. For the moment, TBD is an undocumented organization that has recently migrated to Rotterdam from Parañaque City. Aside from its main mandate—to redistribute access to cultural capital in neighborly ways—it is curious about models of non-extractive research, the possibility of radmin (radical administration), the agency of the secretariat, and dissecting the body public/published body.
Feel free to contribute to Beyond Social.