This edition of Social Talks builds on the Housing Futures event organised by Het Nieuwe Instituut in January 2022 with the Independent School for the City. In the context of today’s housing crisis, guests discuss the future of alternative housing models. How will the squatters’ movement evolve, in what ways can we live cooperatively, and how do we preserve such spatial, social and political strategies for future generations?
With the housing movement once again gaining momentum, Het Nieuwe Instituut and the Independent School for the City are organising the two-day gathering Housing Futures to explore housing alternatives, new strategies for the use of (urban) space, and forms of cohabitation that deviate from the traditional norms. Housing Futures hopes to give a push to the new movement, with fresh insights and practical advice on future living and on recording and archiving the rise of cooperative housing.
Architecture of Appropriation
The Housing Futures weekend follows on from the research project Architecture of Appropriation which analysed six squatting community case studies in the Netherlands through architectural drawings, interviews and archived materials. Bringing together squatting movement expertise and architects, archivists, scholars and lawyers, the project discussed approaches to the research, archival practices and the representation of precarious, non-author-based, and often criminalised spatial practices in the institutional framework of an archive and museum. The project has led to different public programmes, exhibitions and publications, and is also currently presented as part of the exhibition Appropriation as Collective Resistance, which is part of Designing the Social at Het Nieuwe Instituut.
Independent School for the City
The Independent School for the City is a postgraduate educational platform based in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The school is an initiative of Crimson Historians and Urbanists and ZUS (Zones Urbaines Sensibles) and is rooted in their practices of combining a critical and activist approach to the city with effecting real change through architectural and planning projects. Recently, the school organised the summer school, Let’s Be R€al: New Strategies for Collective Affordable Housing (2021), and Taking Back Housing! in collaboration with the International New Town Institute (2020).
The Social Talks series forms part of Thursday Night Live! at Het Nieuwe Instituut. The talks offers more insight into themes from the exhibition Designing the Social: 100 Years of Idiosyncratic Living in the Netherlands. The multi-year exhibition examines how Dutch society has been redesigned over the past century. This can be seen in a series of installations in the form of themed rooms exploring the ‘minimum dwelling’, the community centre, the experiments of Weverij De Ploeg, the design strategies of the second feminist wave, the squatters' movement, and digital pioneers. For each theme, separate teams of curators, researchers and designers have investigated the connections between archival research and current social issues.
The Minimum Dwelling
Social Talks #1
In the first event in the Social Talks series, we revisit the century-old concept of the ‘minimum dwelling’ in the light of today’s urgent housing shortage. Conditions and living patterns have radically shifted over the past 100 years, but could this historic formula be a solution to modern problems? With contributions by Golnar Abbasi and Arvand Pourabbasi (WORKNOT!), and Giovanna Borasi (director of CCA). The evening will be moderated by Tara Lewis.