Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Visual No Risko, No Disko. Participatory Theatre Graduate Show 2024. Copyright: Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch, adapted by MoA

Visual No Risko, No Disko. Participatory Theatre Graduate Show 2024. Copyright: Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch, adapted by MoA

Dear Friends of »Matters of Activity«,

A very eventful and diverse May came to an end. We were particularly excited and pleased to welcome Sylvie Retailleau, the French Minister of Higher Education and Research, to »Matters of Activity« last Tuesday.
Moreover, the pop-up exhibition »Visiting Future Materials« in the Futurium has been opened, where the results of the successful series of workshops can now be visited until August. Don't miss it! We are also pleased to introduce several new members in this issue.
The coming weeks promise a rich program with the »Symbiotic Futures 1.0« workshop at the Berlinische Galerie on June 5th and the Long Night of the Sciences on June 22nd, to name just two highlights. Take part in our »Excellent Pub Quiz«, which we are organizing together with the other Berlin Clusters of Excellence! Finally, as always, with great pleasure, we are pointing out the various awards, mentions, and publications of our members.

Happy reading!
Antje Nestler, Carolin Ott & Franziska Wegener

Liebe Freund:innen von »Matters of Activity«,

ein ereignisreicher und abwechslungsreicher Mai liegt hinter uns. Ganz besonders hat uns gefreut, dass »Matters of Activity« am vergangenen Dienstag die französische Ministerin für Hochschulbildung und Forschung Sylvie Retailleau begrüßen durfte.
Außerdem wurde im Mai die Pop-Up Ausstellung »Materialzukünfte besuchen« im Futurium eröffnet, in deren Rahmen die Ergebnisse der erfolgreichen Workshopreihe nun noch bis August betrachtet werden können. Lasst sie euch nicht entgehen!
Weiterhin ist es uns eine Freude, in dieser Ausgabe auch zahlreiche neue Mitglieder vorstellen zu dürfen.
Auch die kommenden Wochen versprechen ein reiches Programm mit dem Workshop »Symbiotic Futures 1.0« in der Berlinischen Galerie am 5. Juni sowie der Langen Nacht der Wissenschaften am 22. Juni, um nur zwei Highlights zu nennen. Macht mit bei unserem »Exzellenten Pub Quiz«, das wir gemeinsam mit den anderen Berliner Exzellenzclustern organisieren! Schließlich freuen wir uns, wie immer, auf die verschiedenen Auszeichnungen, Erwähnungen und Publikationen unserer Mitglieder hinzuweisen.

Viel Spaß beim Lesen!
Antje Nestler, Carolin Ott & Franziska Wegener

Matters of Activity Welcomed French Minister of Higher Education and Research
Sylvie Retailleau Visited Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Visit of Sylvie Retailleau at Matters of Activity, 28 May 2024. Photo: Stefan Klenke. Copyright: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Visit of Sylvie Retailleau at Matters of Activity, 28 May 2024. Photo: Stefan Klenke. Copyright: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

28.5.2024

During her visit to Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin on May 28th, the French Minister for Higher Education and Research, Sylvie Retailleau also visited the Cluster of Excellence »Matters of Activity«. After a presentation of the Cluster Directors about the current research of »Matters of Activity«, several MoA researchers gave insights into their work in the MoA Design Studio and the Activarium, the Cluster's showroom. The framework for Retailleau's visit was provided by the state visit of French President Emmanuel Macron to Germany from May 26th to 28th. → more

Visiting Material Futures
Pop-up Exhibition at Futurium
Ausstellung »Visiting Material Futures«, Futurium 2024. Copyright: David von Becker

Ausstellung »Visiting Material Futures«, Futurium 2024. Copyright: David von Becker

3.5.2024–25.8.2024

Material Form Function | Weaving | Object Space Agency | Speculative Design | Collactive Materials | Science Communication What material futures can we envision if we engage in collaborative speculation? The pop-up exhibition »Visiting Material Futures« explores this question through contributions from Cluster researchers and Futurium workshop participants. The collaboration between »Matters of Activity«, »Futurium«, and the experimental laboratory for Science Communication »CollActive Materials« employs the concept of co-speculation. This method invites knowledge from research, experience, and everyday life into a co-creative exchange about what material futures seem possible to us today. Don't miss your chance to visit the exhibition until the end of August! → more

Ausstellung »Visiting Material Futures«, Futurium 2024. Copyright: David von Becker

Ausstellung »Visiting Material Futures«, Futurium 2024. Copyright: David von Becker

Researchers from Matters of Activity Awarded the Max Rubner Prize 2024
Interdisciplinary Teams Want to Empower Patients Through VR Experiences and Robotics
Project PERISKOP. Copyright: Digital Surgery Lab, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin

Project PERISKOP. Copyright: Digital Surgery Lab, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin

22.4.2024

Cutting | Material Form Function | Achievements | Prototype / Model | XR On Monday, April 22nd, 2024 the Charité Foundation awarded the Max Rubner Award 2024 to four members of »Matters of Activity«, Zeynep Akbal, Moritz Queisner, Igor Sauer, and Claudia Müller-Birn, among others. Our warmest congratulations on this prestigious award!
The researchers and their colleagues from the Digital Surgery Lab at Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin want to use the award money to advance the PERISKOP project, which focuses on reducing preoperative anxiety and uncertainties of patients in the operating theater environment. The »Communication Robot in the Emergency Department« project, in which Claudia Müller-Birn (FU Berlin) is involved, aims to improve communication and check-in processes for patients in the emergency department. → more

From Mono-Material to Multi-Performance
MoA Member Heidi Jalkh and Angie Dub New Bauhaus Earth Fellows
Bauhaus Earth Fellows 2024 Angie Dub and Heidi Jalkh

Bauhaus Earth Fellows 2024 Angie Dub and Heidi Jalkh

25.4.2024–28.11.2024

We are delighted that MoA Associated Member Heidi Jalkh has been awarded one of the 2024 Bauhaus Earth Fellowships together with Argentinian colleague Angie Dub. Congratulations! In their project »From Mono-Material to Multi-Performance« materials designer Heidi Jalkh and environmental architect Angie Dub will focus on advancing a bioceramic material made at ambient temperature from shellfish industry waste. Through this work, they will build on 10 years of experience in materials experimentation. The fellowship will enable critical milestones towards certification for application by prototyping and testing mono-material gradients in collaboration with RWTH Aachen. At the same time, Heidi and Angie will work with Bauhaus Earth to demonstrate potential applications of the material in 1:1 architectural fragments in Berlin and Buenos Aires. → more

Wissensvermittlung mit Virtual Reality
Interview mit Christian Stein im Rahmen der Reihe »Die BUA und ich«
Photo: Stefan Klenke

Photo: Stefan Klenke

31.5.2024

Object Space Agency | Science Communication | XR In das Innere von Wolken und Steinen reisen oder eine Schulklasse in Kenia besuchen – das und noch viel mehr ist ganz einfach über ein VR-Headset möglich. gamelab.berlin Co-Head und MoA-Mitglied Christian Stein entwickelt die virtuellen Umgebungen für diese digitalen Ausflüge. Er erforscht, wie Nutzer:innen damit interagieren und wie Gamification dabei hilft, Wissen auf neue Weise zu vermitteln. Ein Interview im Rahmen der neuen Reihe »Die BUA und ich – Protokolle aus dem Exzellenzverbund« gibt interesannte Einblicke in Christians Forschung und macht diese auch für ein Publikum jenseits der Academia greifbar. → more

Drawing as Digestion: Spatial Knowing Processes
Report of the First »More than Human Sketching« Workshop at Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin
Workshop »More than Human Sketching 1«, Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin, May 2024. Copyright: Maxime Le Calvé.

Workshop »More than Human Sketching 1«, Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin, May 2024. Copyright: Maxime Le Calvé.

29.5.2024–30.5.2024

Cutting | Graphic Anthropology | XR The first event of the »More-than-human Sketching« series was a great success. Not only were the workshops fully booked, but the SpecLab team also spent two days developing a new immersive performance for the museum's visitors using augmented reality glasses and spatial drawing software. The performance, »Drawing as Digestion: Spatial Knowing Processes,« will be presented to the public soon. Short lectures and activities by Elaine Bonavia, Paulina Greta Stefanovic, and Maxime Le Calvé provided an unusual framework for participants to engage with the embodied and transformative power of tracing lines and being traced by them. Save the date for the next workshop on June 20th/21st! → more

Biorobotik zur Einführung
Neue Publikation von Clustermitglied Marco Tamborini
Marco Tamborini: Biorobotik zur Einführung

Marco Tamborini: Biorobotik zur Einführung

17.5.2024–31.5.2024

Symbolic Material | Publications | Robotics | Biodesign Was ist Biorobotik? Unter welchen philosophischen, historischen und ethischen Voraussetzungen können bioinspirierte Roboter gebaut werden? Wie haben sich das Bild des Menschen und das Verhältnis von Natur und Technik durch die Herstellung von biohybriden Robotern verändert? → more

Elementare Ekstasen. Sondierungen der Technosphäre
Monografie von Clustermitglied Léa Perraudin Open Access veröffentlicht
Book Cover Perraudin, L. 2024. <em>Elementare Ekstasen. Sondierungen der Technosphäre.</em> Series: Future Ecologies, Lüneburg: meson Press.

Book Cover Perraudin, L. 2024. Elementare Ekstasen. Sondierungen der Technosphäre. Series: Future Ecologies, Lüneburg: meson Press.

31.5.2024–31.1.2025

Material Form Function | Climate | More-Than-Human | Air | Water | Publications Elementare Ekstasen überschwemmen, erodieren und evaporieren die wohlsortierten Grenzziehungen zwischen Technik, Umwelt und Mensch. Als Neuverortung im Spannungsfeld medienökologischer, neomaterialistischer und technikfeministischer Theoriebildung sondiert Léa Perraudin all jene Widerständigkeiten und Un/Verfügbarkeiten, die von techno-kapitalistisch protegierten Operationen nicht zu tilgen sind. → more

New Members
Elaine Bonavia

Elaine Bonavia is an Artistic Associate at weissensee school of art and design berlin and practice-based PhD Candidate. She teaches courses on digital design and fabrication and MoA Design Research studio projects within the Textile and Material Department. Bonavia is an Associated Member in »Material Form Function« and »Weaving« → more

Prof. Dr. Sheng-Ching Chang

Sheng-Ching Chang, Director of the Institute of Museum Studies and professor in the Department of History at Fu Jen Catholic University (New Taipei City), specializes in museum collections and East-West art exchanges. Chang is an Associated Member of »Symbolic Material«. → more

Prof. Dr. Michelle Christensen

Michelle Christensen is a sociologist and designer exploring the spaces in between these realms. Her research interests include trans- and postdisciplinarity, the politics of design, and the democratic potential of free/open technologies. Christensen is a Principal Investigator in »Object Space Agency« → more

Dr. Florian Conradi

Florian Conradi is a designer and researcher combining critical theory and design as an approach to design research. Currently he co-heads the research group »Design, Diversity and New Commons« at the Berlin University of the Arts Conradi is a Principal Investigator in »Object Space Agency«. → more

Prof. Mischa Kuball

Mischa Kuball is an Conceptual artist, has been working in public and institutional spaces since 1977. He uses the medium of light to explore architectural spaces as well as social and political discourses and reflects on a variety of aspects from socio-cultural structures to architectural interventions. Kuball is an Asscociated Member in »Object Space Ageny« and »Symbolic Material«. → more

Claudia Kudinova

Claudia Kudinova is an art and visual historian with a focus on the Post-War Avant-Garde and Contemporary Art. Through the research on Hal Busse's pictorial strategies, she aims to render its specific artistic relations visible and comprehensible in new contexts. Kudinova is an Associated Member and Pre-Doctoral Researcher in »Object Space Agency«. → more

Dr. Mara Trübenbach

Mara Trübenbach studied architecture and gained a cross-disciplinary professional horizon from interior design to landscape architecture in various offices across Europe. Currently, she teaches at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism at the Bauhaus-University Weimar. Trübenbach is an Associated Member in »Object Space Agency«. → more

Nayeli Vega Vargas

Nayeli Vega Vargas is an artist and a designer. In her current research, she investigates the links between digital and analog mediums, such as virtual 3D worlds and physical objects, and practices such as knotting and weaving with digital crafts. Vega Vargas is an Associated Member in »Material Form Function« and »Weaving«. → more

Symbiotic Futures 1.0
Interdisciplinary Workshop at Berlinische Galerie
Beetle-infestation of spruce, Feldbuch, Frankonia. Image: Pelin Asa, MPI-CI, MoA

Beetle-infestation of spruce, Feldbuch, Frankonia. Image: Pelin Asa, MPI-CI, MoA

5.6.2024

Material Form Function | More-Than-Human | Fungi/Mycelium | Bacteria | Tree Bark | Climate Modern life is mainly built on concrete, glass and steel. Recently, however, these construction materials have been increasingly discussed due to their impact on emissions, waste production, and the climate crisis. In response to this, designers, architects, and other scholars investigate novel approaches to biomaterials, recycling options, and circular models of fabrication and construction. The aim is to form symbiotic alliances with fungi, beetle-infested trees, bacteria, or residual materials and to acknowledge the surprising potentials of these unconventional collaborators. Can elements of nature thus be understood as equal partners in construction, architecture, and the design of daily objects? We cordially invite you to this workshop on June 5th, 2024 at Berlinische Galerie, to discuss these symbiotic practices as they hint at other collaborative futures beyond resource extraction. → more

Cultures of Regeneration
On 11 July, David Jeevendrampillai Speaks about Extra-Terrestrial Anthropology: Design Thinking for a Post-Planetary Social Life
Poster Lecture Series 2024, Photo: Charlotte Linton. Copyright: Matters of Activity.

Poster Lecture Series 2024, Photo: Charlotte Linton. Copyright: Matters of Activity.

2.5.2024–11.7.2024

Material Form Function | Teaching | Biodesign | Textiles Rapidly increasing socio-ecological damage and the urgent need for care, repair, and recovery have led to renewed calls for regenerative design as a means of wayfinding towards new forms of just and sustainable life on earth, prompting critical questions concerning the reconfigured pasts they invoke to the possible futures they open up. Aiming to (re)design the way we live to support our interdependence on natural ecosystems, regenerative systems thinking is being applied to fundamental fields of human activity, from food production and agriculture to medicine, textiles, architecture, rural revival, and the urban built environment to other-worldly materialities. The lecture series organized by Lucy Norris, which started on May 2nd, will, among other things, explore how traces of former ways of being in the world and concepts such as ›indigenous knowledge‹ are referenced as ways to move forward and ask what futures are being imagined by whom and for whom, and how some forms of living are enabled while other possibilities are negated. → more

No Risko, No Disco
Last Tickets Available for Graduate Show at Ernst Busch University of Theatre Arts
Visual No Risko, no Disko. Participatory Theatre Graduate Show 2024. Copyright: Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch

Visual No Risko, no Disko. Participatory Theatre Graduate Show 2024. Copyright: Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch

7.6.2024–8.6.2024

Object Space Agency | Performance | Teaching | XR What can bioplastics, kinetic sand, and virtual reality offer as actors on the theatre stage, confronting participants with impulses to act on current socio-ecological crises? The students of the Master's program »Spiel und Objekt« at Ernst Busch University of Theatre Arts, taught by visiting professor for new media in theater practice and MoA member Clemens Winkler, invite you to answer this question on June 7th and 8th. Over these two days, students showcase the results of their process-oriented research spanning participative theater, sociology, speculative dramaturgy, technologies, and new media. → more

Narration als materielle Praxis?
Workshop mit MoA-Gastwissenschaftlerin Christiane Arndt und Karin Krauthausen
Detail of the Cover from »Lines: A Brief History« by Tim Ingold, Routledge 2007

Detail of the Cover from »Lines: A Brief History« by Tim Ingold, Routledge 2007

12.6.2024

Weaving | Writing Die literaturwissenschaftliche Auseinandersetzung mit den Theorien des ›New Materialism‹ rückt die materiellen Dinge und Praktiken in literarischen Texten und den literarischen Text als Ding und materielle Praxis ins Zentrum der analytischen Aufmerksamkeit. In der Folge des ›material turn‹ fragt diese Herangehensweise damit auch danach, ob und wie Literatur den anthropozentrischen Blick herausfordern oder eventuell überwinden kann. Integriert werden zudem weitere Infragestellungen, die mit dem neuen Fokus auf Materie und materielle Praktiken verbunden sind: So vor allem die Trennung in Natur und Kultur, die Unterscheidung der Geschlechter und zwischen Spezies. Storytelling – und damit auch Narrativität – ist ein grundlegender Aspekt in den Untersuchungen des New Materialism, und dies als Praxis für Erkenntnis und konkrete Interventionen. Der Workshop am 12. Juni 2024, organisiert von Christiane Arndt (Queen's University Canada) und Karin Krauthausen, geht von diesen philosophischen und anthropologischen Auffassungen von Erzählung und Erzählen als materialer Praxis aus, und alle Interessierten sind herzlich eingeladen, sie aus literaturwissenschaftlicher Sicht zu diskutieren und weiterzudenken. → more

Growing Architecture - Co-Designing with Fungi
Last Open Lab Evening of the Series »Visiting Material Futures« at the Futurium
Mykoplektonik by Natalija Miodragović and Dimitra Almpani-Lekka. Copyright: Matters of Activity

Mykoplektonik by Natalija Miodragović and Dimitra Almpani-Lekka. Copyright: Matters of Activity

13.6.2024

Material Form Function | Collactive Materials | Fungi/Mycelium | Speculative Design | Science Communication In the last workshop of the series at Futurium, we dive into the interconnected world of fungi and their mycelium. Together with architects Dimitra Almpani-Lekka and Natalija Miodragović, we explore the properties and behaviors of mycelium in nature and architecture, to speculate about future relations and applications: Could the buildings of tomorrow be grown in collaboration with plants and fungi? Can fungi help us build life-supporting networks in the cities to maintain natural resources and the local biodiversity? How can co-designing and co-habiting with a living organism transform our experience of future architecture and our relationships with other species? The workshop is already fully booked. → more

Forum Wissenswerte: Neue (und alte) Baumaterialien
Gesprächsrunde der Technologiestiftung Berlin mit Christiane Sauer nun in Mediathek abrufbar
18.6.2024

Weaving | Material Form Function | Object Space Agency | Science Communication In Berlin wird gebaut - ständig und viel. Doch vom einfachen »Stein auf Stein« sind wir mittlerweile weit entfernt. Wissenschaftler:innen aus Berlin erforschen neue Materialien wie Biobeton oder den Einsatz von Textilien und Pilzen. Aber auch »Altes« findet im zirkulären Bauen neuen Einsatz. Über altes und neues Baumaterial sprach Christiane Sauer, MoA-Mitglied und Professorin für Material und Entwurf im räumlichen Kontext an der weißensee kunsthochschule berlin, mit Wolfram Schmidt (Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung) und Annabelle von Reutern (Verband für Bauen im Bestand e.V.) am 18. Juni 2024, in der Technologiestiftung Berlin. Das Gespräch, moderiert von Jessica Wiener, kann nun in der Mediathek des rbb24 Inforadio nachgehört werden. → more

Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften 2024
Auch Matters of Activity lädt am 22. Juni wieder zu spannenden Einblicken ein
Visual Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften 2024

Visual Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften 2024

22.6.2024

Science Communication Auch in diesem Jahr können interessierte Besucher:innen bei der Langen Nacht der Wissenschaften am 22. Juni wieder spannende Einblicke in die Forschung an Berliner Hochschulen und Forschungseinrichtungen gewinnen - und auch in diesem Jahr sind einige Mitglieder von Matters of Activity mit dabei. Als MoA-PR-Team freuen wir uns außerdem, gemeinsam mit den Wissenschaftskommunikator:innen der anderen Berliner Exzellenzcluster wieder ein Pubquiz zu veranstalten. Dieses Jahr bieten wir sogar zwei Runden im Foyer des TU-Hauptgebäudes an, los geht's um 19 Uhr. → more

Visual Pub Quiz 2024

Visual Pub Quiz 2024

Matter of South. Biomaterial Cultures from Latin America
Exhibition Opening at Kunstgewerbemuseum on 12 July
TRAZOS Edición Biomateriales, 2024, Gisela Pozzetti, Heidi Jalkh, Sistemas Materiales. Photo: Maia Croizet

TRAZOS Edición Biomateriales, 2024, Gisela Pozzetti, Heidi Jalkh, Sistemas Materiales. Photo: Maia Croizet

12.7.2024–26.8.2024

Material Form Function | Biodesign | More-Than-Human Under the new discursive platform »More Than Human: Design after the Anthropocene« at the Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin, created by Claudia Banz, Heidi Jalkh has been invited to curate a project in collaboration with co-curators Gisela Pozzetti and Valentina Aliaga. The »Matter of South - Biomaterial Cultures from Latin America« project explores how biomaterial initiatives in this region harness local culture and biodiversity to create new material cultures. This endeavor also aims to reframe our relationship with the immediate environment while questioning and providing alternatives to the established extractivist model. The exhibition will open on July 12th, 7 pm, and runs through August 26th. A two-day international symposium on this topic is scheduled for the project, tentatively set for July 17th-18th. → more

Field/Works II at EASA 2024
Call for Submissions 14 June
Copyright: Francisca José Rodrigues & Gilmar Rodrigues

Copyright: Francisca José Rodrigues & Gilmar Rodrigues

31.5.2024–14.6.2024

Object Space Agency | Cutting | Science Communication The European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA) is encouraging members to participate online and digitally to the conference this year. As part of the online activities, the convenors of EASA Barcelona 2024 are delighted to announce a call for artworks for the online exhibition project, »Field/Works II: Generating Ecologies of Trust«, curated by ANTART members Maxime Le Calvé and Jen Clarke. → more

Warm Invitation to the XR Art & Networking 2024 at HTW Berlin
Annual Event by AURORA XR School for Artists
Visual XR Art & Networking 2024. Copyright: HTW Berlin

Visual XR Art & Networking 2024. Copyright: HTW Berlin

With inspiring short talks by excellent speakers, innovative XR projects, workshops, a coffee truck directly on the Spree, and plenty of time for discussions, XR Art & Networking is the annual event of the AURORA XR School for Artists at HTW Berlin. With Artistic Research, Analog Haptics, and Autonomous Avatars, the focus is on three current topics that will be explored in various formats at the interface of research, technology, and culture and creative industries. Further information and registration are at ↗ this link. Funded by the ERDF as part of the »INP-III« program.