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IF WALLS COULD TALK, the multimedia installation by (A)WAKE, is an ethical fiction reflecting on a new social fabric that was woven during the Covid-19 pandemic. Expecting to find collectiveness, solidarity and togetherness in this shared pain of isolation and restrictions, many of us fell into a cold web of online signalling, moral codes and social ladders – proposing immobile polarising positions, rather than possibilities of negotiation and finding common ground.

The time of New Age activism introduced online regulation systems on platforms such as Instagram, offering ethical education, collective guilt and unified support, often represented in forms of call-out or outrage — free and unlimited. In our joint endeavour to do better, we somehow got stuck in a mesh of performative social posturing and ethical morality that looped in its own codes. This morality can be seen as a new social currency.

Inspired by the Dutch saying ‘wanneer de muren op je afkomen’ (when the walls close in on you) this installation playfully unravels this dynamic. On the one hand, it defames this new social currency by moving beyond simplified binary oppositions, and on the other hand it brings multiple narratives into play and provides new routes out of this wall-to-wall rivalry.

This evening will suggest multiple strategies inspired and developed in the WANA (West-Asian and North African) region.

19:30 – 21:00

Het Nieuwe Instituut
Museumpark 25
3015 CB Rotterdam




The collective (A)WAKE is one of the forces behind the club/space MONO, a cultural space for alternative sounds in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. (A)WAKE is a collective built by diaspora artists from the WANA region. (A)WAKE is committed to providing a space for the in-between diasporic voices from similarly mixed cultural backgrounds. Its direction is driven by questioning the emancipatory potential of the digital world in favour of equal access and mutual cultural exchange between WANA and Western Europe. Through the focus on these two regions which they personally find themselves in, they aim towards propositive approaches which challenge the greater North-South power dynamics through art and digital culture.

Home of Your Own in the Temporary House of Home

As part of the Temporary House of Home exhibition, a room called Home of Your Own offers space to the representatives of a new generation of designers. Because of social distancing, this generation had to spend months of their education, leading up to graduation, in front of the computer screen and in often complicated domestic circumstances. How has this experience shaped their understanding of the home, and how does it relate to their own practice? In a series of bi-monthly installations, the young designers present their own highly personal views of home. 

Thursday Night at Het Nieuwe Instituut
Luca Napoli

Thursday Night Live! is a weekly programme of lectures, screenings and discussions on architecture, design and digital culture. Developments and critical insights are discussed by thinkers, designers and makers from the Netherlands and abroad.