At this year’s conference of the German Foundation for Design Theory and Research I was invited to speak about the projects I conducted with the University of Arts Berlin in Nairobi, Kenya. In my talk I presented theses and conclusions I draw from the experience of the collaborative work we did there to address a more contemporary, just and realistic approach towards international development and how design could actually contribute towards this change.
Starting in October, I will work much closer with the NGO Nyendo, who is supporting the Love School and 13 other privately run schools in the slums of Kangemi and Kawangware (CIFEFA network). I traveled to Kenya in late September/October to connect different initiatives with the CIFEFA schools: the Wajukuu Art Project in Lunga Lunga, the Kounkuey Design Initiative in Kibera and the FabLab GEARBOX in Nairobi.
Our vision is to establish an educational exchange program between designers, German pupils (grade 11) and the initiatives in Nairobi, which transfers both polytechnical know-how as well as tools to run self sustained food production. This work is part of my PhD research and will be developed throughout the next years. Together with the participants we came up with a name for our endeavor: INUKA SASA (rise now).
We are very happy and proud! Thanks a lot for that honour! Find out more about the nomination here.
Starting in October I will take over the project management for the work with the CIFEFA schools in Kangemi and Kawangware, Nairobi, Kenya. The cooperation will be run through Supernova Institute as one of our coop’s pilot projects, trying to build networks both in Nairobi and within Africa connecting people from similar projects. Our first attempt is to implement urban gardening structures in a big co-creation workshop in early 2018, that have beed designed by participants of the Regenerate! project during my professorship Berlin University of Arts. I am super happy to join the team and hopefully will be able to create resourceful synergies!
We are happy and proud to have finally launched a first website for our quite ambitious project, that is supposed to bring together initiatives, people and projects to develop formats and methods for empowerment through making and design. If this resonates with you and you think you should be part of our institute, please get in touch!
With great appreciation we announce our participation at State of Design. We will show the project at the Vollgut Lager of Kindl Brewery from June 1 – 4. Anna Badur and I will talk about the project on June 2, 4.30 pm.
You can download your e-book HERE
„Cities have a crucial role to play as catalysts of the system change we need. They can embody a new story about development and progress in which the health of biodiversity, foodsheds and watersheds are key indicators of success. A city is most healthy as a meeting place for change agents, outliers, and shadow networks. The healthy city is about participation, not spectacle. Connecting is itself a form of innovation.“ John Thackara
By acknowledging the city as a living system where things grow organically, offering a new human centered fluidity, we will approach its territories as a fertile ground for community regeneration and a healthy (fair, resilient, circular, sustainable) local food system, while understanding ourselves as agents of change by designing and producing genuine urban abundance.
This living city is already emerging with new kinds of infrastructures: food coops, collective urban gardening and farming, craft breweries etc. We will kick off the semester with a Berlin wide field research, exploring and identifying key elements for local food systems in a community context (production, transformation, distribution, consumption). We will visit and interview grass roots initiatives, start-ups, farmers, community gardens, local producers etc., cook and eat together, explore the different set-ups of community and share it all in a collective map, which will be the starting point for the semester project.
Inspired by emerging disciplines like permaculture, transition and regenerative design, the goal of this project is to experience a socially engaged design practice and to establish a systemic understanding of the topic by investigating different scenarios: we will work with an allotment garden and analyze its specific structures and rules and how these shape its community; we will explore the potential of the „house of statistics“ at Alexanderplatz, a building and space whose purpose still needs to be defined and we will address our thinking towards the very special constraints of the slums in Nairobi and its consequences for community purposes.
The systemic approach will allow us to think at different scales (Berlin/Nairobi) and help us to decolonize knowledge (and design) and to understand, how we can share knowledge and resources in fairer, healthier way.
We will approach these scenarios with questions like:
– How to propose new food products & service systems (PPS) that regenerate local economies as well as communities?
– How to use mobile & lean structures to establish resilient and circular food systems that will not be affected by politics, real estate speculation etc.?
– How to help people to take back the city by establishing shared food production/transformation/systems?
with Virginie Gailing, Prof. Markus Bader,St. Oberholz, KDI, Barefoot Solutions, NGO Nyendo, Edgeryders’ OpenVillage
While the exhibition of “The Love School Project” is still running, Antony and I will give a Talk at Republica in May, sharing our insights and plans for the future of the project. Looking forward to a big audience and great feedback!
To celebrate the ten-year anniversary of UNESCO naming Berlin a “City of Design”, the editors Robert Eysoldt, a strategic and creative consultant, and Raban Ruddigkeit, a designer and editor, have assembled 100 successful projects, products, and processes by 75 Berlin agencies, design labs, public initiatives, networks, and universities, which currently connect Berlin with the world in “The Berlin Design Digest”, published by Slanted.
I am very honored to not only present “The ShitShow”, one of 6 unconventional projects that were developed during the Hacking Utopia project at UdK, but also having been invited to write an essay about a topic I think to be relevant in the current design debate. The text reflects the contemporality of the ever so famous design thinking framework and demands for the design community to step up and reclaim their expertise, while adjusting the creative innovation processes to the current needs of a world in crisis, including self reflection, embodied cognition and focus on taboos – it’s about time to come clean.
THE LOVE SCHOOL PROJECT
co-creation and design for transformation
VERNISSAGE Thursday · May 4, 2017 · 7pm
EXHIBITION May 5 – 10, 2017
weekend 12pm – 7pm · weekdays 5pm – 9pm
Galerie erstererster · Pappelalle 69 · 10437 Berlin
PRESENTING Louis Bindernagel · Anna Drewes
Martin Fenske · Georgia von le Fort · Julius Führer
Dario Iannone · Antony Karori · Agnes Kelm
Yannik Rohloff · Anna Ryzhova · Pauline Schlautmann
& Kids from Love School · Kawangware · Nairobi · Kenya
SUPERVISION Prof. Susanne Stauch · Anna Badur
SUPPORT Antony Karori · NGO Nyendo · German Embassy
Besides the financial support of the school in Nairobi, the goal of the project is diverse: it’s an experiment in co-creation as a new and empowering way to work together internationally, it will sensitize the students to see their work as a creative service in a client relationship and it offers the kids from the Love School Center the opportunity to participate in the purchase of the the grounds and thus support their feeling of self-efficacy. For all participants this project will be an inspiring, mind expanding experience.
With a focus on craft, material understanding and form development the project is dedicated to the number Pi = 3,14… The work will be mostly in porcelain and fine metals, wood and fabric are possible as well. Besides the design process the question of value of those materials, the necessity of new products and the relation to a global social context will be reflected. There is a cooperation with the „Love School Center“ in the Slum Kangemi in Nairobi, Kenya. Through the NGO „NYENDO“ we have the artist and a coordinator Anthony Karori on-site, who will work with the children around the topic of pi and will create drawings, collages, photographs etc. together. In exchange with the students from UdK these first interpretations will be taken up and developed further aesthetically, functionally and formally. The students will be in touch with the kids on a regular basis through skype and the finished design objects will be sold in an auction at the end of the semester. The revenue serves the purchase of land on which the Love School Center stands which is in danger of being cleared out due to speculation.
Concept & Supervision: GastProf. Susanne Stauch, IPP, ID2, UdK
Partner: Irmgard Wutte/ Nyendo NGO
Financial Support: Martin Bisicky & Dominik Becker
Very much looking forward to participating as a design thinking coach at the Impact Week in July. It is a program uniting people from a variety of countries to develop sustainable business models using different innovation techniques like Design Thinking and Business Model Generation.
Nadia El- Imam from Edgeryders and Daniel Kruse from Open State are going to give us insights and case studies on how to build our future with open, collaborative and interdisciplinary networks. Very much looking forward to that evening! Thanks again to Designtransfer, UdK for giving it a stage.
Sabine Junginger and Caroline Paulick-Thiel both did an amazing job in explaining the complexity of policy making and how designers can get involved and how design can and should grow into the realm of social transformation. They are both involved with the initiative politics for tomorrow. Looking forward to further cooperation! Thanks to Designtransfer UdK to make this evening happen.
We had a very intense 3 day kick-off workshop in Sauen with 11 product design and 10 GWK students diving into the topic of #OpenCare and how this relates to hacking, people on the move, mental resilience, food cultures and their own lives. The project is contributing its research and design results to the project OP3N CARE, which is funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 framework programme. We have very ambitious goals: working interdisciplinary within the university and in collaboration with the online community Edgeryders, this project is rooted in a real world context. StartNext is another partner, offering us input and support to create high quality campaigns to crowdfund the design results. Those will be shown at designtransfer, UdK in July 2016 and in a final exhibition of the research project in Milan and London in 2017. Another great opportunity for the students is the chance to apply for a fellowship to get further support on their ideas, e.g. by CERN. To find out about the project, visit the OP3N Care Community for deep content and interest in the research or the Hacking Utopia website for a general overview of our project work