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The new rooms display more unique forms of living together and social thinking as part of our continuing quest to explore “designing the social”. This time, we look at how society and design relate to each other from two very different perspectives: that of nightlife and people at play, and that of the ‘ecotect’ who stimulates human creativity by designing in partnership with natural processes.

Opening programme

  • 19:00-19:30 Welcome moment with drinks and snacks at the Deck

  • 19:30-21:00 Opening rooms in gallery 1

  • 21:00 Galleries close, but you can order drinks at the bar in Het Nieuwe Café

RoXY – Nightclub as Cultural Crowbar

In this room, club culture is central as a continuation of the type of social design seen in Constant Nieuwenhuis’s New Babylon, Provo, and the squatters’ movement. In the 1980s, Roxy founder Peter Giele and others pioneered an infectious mixture of music, dance, eroticism, theatre and design in line with the city’s earlier traditions as a testing ground for creativity and with claims to living and working space. (Concept and research: Juha van ’t Zelfde | Spatial design: Miroslav Rajic | Video and lighting design: Karl Klomp)

Read more about The RoXY – Nightclub as Cultural Crowbar

The Eco-Cathedral: Louis Le Roy, wild garden idealogist

This room adds a more-than-human component to the exploration of how designers have shaped alternative forms of living together. Self-proclaimed ‘ecotect’ Louis Le Roy anticipated current ecological thinking with his plea for organic gardens and landscape architecture. The eco-cathedral, a concept he developed in the 1960s, is an unsurpassed collaboration of people, animals and plants. (Concept, research, design and video: Minji Choi | Concept, research and texts: Joost Emmerik | Art direction: Frank Bruggeman | Advice on collection material: Suzanne Mulder)

read more about The Eco-Cathedraal – Louis Le Roy, Wild Garden Idealogist

Designing the social

The semi-permanent exhibition Designing the Social documents the versatile and sometimes radical interaction between design and society over the past century. Long before the concept of ‘social design’ took hold, it was not only professionals, but often also committed citizens and activists, who devised design strategies to bring about social change. Based on research and interpretations by different researchers, curators and designers, the installation takes visitors through a series of striking scenes from social history.

The question is always: how has design contributed to new worldviews, ways of living, working and communication, and to a society in which we all have the means to shape our own ideas about the social?

Read more about Designing the Social.

19:00 – 21:00
Dutch and English

Het Nieuwe Instituut
Museumpark 25
3015 CB Rotterdam


Free entrance

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.