The workshop is about the design of theory, here understood primarily as a tool. It will be about using ideas and concepts like hammers and nails: instruments to build with, support structures, interfaces. Drawing from a three-year-long collective experiment in speculative urban design (The New Normal at Strelka Institute), the workshop will ask how to sharpen our tools to think the city of today and tomorrow.
Over these two days, we will not attempt to deliver a readymade package of “key concepts”; rather, we will outline strategies and skills for designers to assemble their own conceptual kit. Based on the participants’ research interests and questions, together we will experiment with mapping, diagramming, organising, directing, or stress-testing ideas for the contemporary practice of design.
With a focus on design for the city to come, participants will learn how to approach and manipulate contemporary critical theory as a material to work with.
As a result of the workshop each participant will produce a conceptual map of their current research interests.
Participants are expected to come with some preparation, and a strong commitment to engage in the craft of theory over two days. We expect them to read, participate in discussions, formulate questions, and organise their current research interest in a visual form.
Francesco Sebregondi is an architect and a researcher based between Paris and London. His work explores the intersections of violence, technology, and the urban condition. Since 2011 he is a Research Fellow at Forensic Architecture, former Research Coordinator of the project (2013-2015), and co-editor of its first collective publication “Forensis: The Architecture of Public Truth” (Sternberg Press, 2014). He is The New Normal alumni and is currently completing a PhD at Goldsmiths University of London. Since 2017, he is also a Research Fellow at UCL’s Centre for Blockchain Technology. Francesco’s writings have been published in journals such as the Architectural Review, Volume, Footprint, the Avery Review, or City. He has taught at the School of Architecture, Royal College of Art and has been invited to deliver talks and workshops in many international venues.
Nicolay Boyadjiev is an architect, design strategist, and the Design and Education tutor of The New Normal programme at Strelka Institute. He has taught at many academic institutions including the HSE in Moscow, McGill SoA in Montreal, KADK in Copenhagen and IAAC in Barcelona, as well as the internationally based Digital Earth fellowship for research and experimentation. Before TNN at Strelka he was a researcher in the “Hybrid Urbanism” education programme, where his 2016 speculative design project Google Urbanism was featured among the finalists of the Fast Company 2017 “World Changing Ideas” awards.
The workshop will be held in English. Please note that translation will not be provided. Make sure you bring a laptop, a notebook and a pen. A preliminary reading list will be sent to participants before the course.
This workshop is part of a 4-workshop series based on the experience within The New Normal speculative design programme and think-tank. Each of the workshops introduces participants to new ideas, concepts and skills and provides a glimpse into The New Normal and education at Strelka. The workshops will range from a theoretical seminar to film & fiction, VR and a speculative design charrette.
Participants of three workshops will have a discount price of 6000rub for all, and 8000rub if you choose to participate in all 4 workshops.
Apply before July 31. Please note that the number of participants is limited. Contact Strelka's producer Artur Safonov at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.