In 2018, designer Basse Stittgen won the New Material Fellowship with his work Blood Related. To wrap up his research on cow blood, he worked with designer and filmmaker Juan Arturo García on a short film on the slaughterhouse industry. During this event the film Blood Related will be launched, and the research preceding the film will be discussed with invited guests.
Content warning: during this event topics such as (animal) blood and the slaughter industry will be discussed.
It can be argued that the most controversial or shocking of bodily fluids is blood. Blood is what keeps us alive, binds us to each other, and what is shed for nations and causes. However, not all blood is considered equal. Distinctions are made between bloodlines and blood types, but also between human and animal blood.
After following the trail of cow blood upstream, Stittgen discovered that by great design and deflection, the huge amount of blood produced through the slaughterhouse industry is rendered invisible. The slaughterhouse industry is one of the most resource-intensive yet invisible industries of today. Design plays a significant role in this industry, by streamlining processes and increasing efficiency for even greater profits. The tools and processes used during slaughter determine the value of not only meat, but also its by-products, such as cow blood.
Nadine Botha, research designer, curator and writer, held an interview with Basse Stittgen on his project. Click here to read their conversation.
The work of Basse Stittgen is positioned at the intersection of design, art and material research. It stems from a fascination for material, how it can be created, applied, used/reused and questioned. This approach might lead to investigations into production cycles, or become a tool to unfold hidden narratives and potentials embedded in matter. Basse graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2017, since then his work has been exhibited at the V&A Museum, the NGV Melbourne and the MMCA Seoul, and is part of the collection of the MAK Vienna and the Wellcome Collection.
Juan Arturo García
Juan Arturo García is a designer and filmmaker hailing from Mexico City. His work strands along evidence, fiction and forecast to explore a space between translation and the impossibility of translation, with special interest in the ways in which languages are materially, bureaucratically and metaphorically a defining condition of access; in other words, the political implications of hyper- , mis- , and un-translatability.
Hendrik-Jan Grievink is designer at Next Nature Network since 2007. He is an expert in translating philosophy into clear-cut objects and experiences. Since 2007, Hendrik-Jan has been responsible for what he calls ‘R&D&D’; the research, development and design of much of the content and visual output of the network.
Dr. Bernice Bovenkerk (1973) is associate professor at the Social Sciences Group, subdepartment of Communication, Philosophy and Technology of Wageningen University & Research (WUR). Previously she was post-doc and lecturer at the Ethics Institute at the Department of Philosophy of Utrecht University. She received her PhD from the University of Melbourne, Australia, on a dissertation titled The Biotechnology Debate. Democracy in the face of intractable disagreement. She received her Master’s title at the University of Amsterdam on a thesis titled Pluralism in Environmental Ethics.
Nadine Botha is a research designer, curator and writer preoccupied with how unseen social, political, legal, economic and cultural systems design our objects, bodies, homes, cities, technologies, experiences and knowledge. Her practice brings together storytelling, curating, writing, performance, activism, media analysis, and participatory practices in exhibitions, digital media, events, publications, workshops, journalism, and academia. She graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2017, receiving the Gijs Bakker Award for best Master’s project. Currently based in Rotterdam, she is a winner of a 2020 Bio Art and Design Award from MU Hybrid Art House, and was awarded a 2019-2020 Talent Development Grant from the Creative Industries Fund. Her work has been presented at Het Nieuwe Instituut, Venice Architecture Biennale, Swiss Design Network Summit, Milan Design Week, Dutch Design Week, and the Luma Foundation, among others.