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Sandberg Insituut

ECOLOGIES OF TRANSFORMATION

“The role of the artist is to make the revolution irresistible” Toni Cade Bambara. In this period of political uncertainty, Sandberg Instituut’s new Temporary Programme: Ecologies of Transformation will research how we can integrate art and embodiment to develop paths towards social change.

The course will research and develop artistic practices rooted in care and pleasure as an antidote to the burn out that is common to activism cultures.

Ecologies of Transformation is underpinned by the idea that learning about the past allows us to vision and grow new futures. Aspects of postcolonial theory, intersectional feminism and disability justice will be explored, alongside core texts including Rae Johnson’s Embodied Social Justice, Mary Watkins & Helene Schulman’s Towards Psychologies of Liberation, as well as adrienne maree brown’s Emergent Strategy series. The intention is to spend more time growing solutions than dismantling problems, while maintaining a generative critical lens to create work which facilitates community change.

Ecologies of Transformation will support participants to confront the self, live the lessons and research their own embodied journeys. The first year will explore body-based practices to manage stress in order to sustain social change work. Interdisciplinary research will be analyzed to understand the political moment and how to create bridges across difference. In addition to the writing of the thesis and developing of final works, the second year is focused on partnering with Netherlands based organisations to bring trauma informed research and artistic practice into community contexts. Throughout the programme transformational theatre tools, such as Theatre of the Oppressed, will be used to hold multiple narratives and move beyond the victim - perpetrator binary, to acknowledge ways we can be harmed and simultaneously be a source of harm in a variety of roles, including bystander or witness.

The programme consists of lectures, embodiment workshops, co-created content and reflective group discussion. International guests from the intersections of art and activism will share practices that are helpful in creating transformation, such as Pleasure Activism. Independent work will be encouraged, alongside collaborative projects within the course group and wider school. Participants will present new work at the end of each semester.Performance or movement artists, experience designers, curators, art therapists, filmmakers, visual artists, interdisciplinary practitioners with curious minds and compassionate presence, are warmly invited to apply. We encourage applicants from the global south or those with ancestry from outside of Europe.