• Design research: Infrastructures for Objection 

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    Posted: 16 June 2020

    By Gabriel A. Maher and Roberto Perez Gayo

    The future of Strijp S

    Designers Gabriel A. Maher and Roberto Perez Gayo presented 'Infrastructures for Objection’ and 'Infrastructures for Participation' as their case studies after finishing their research trajectory about the future of Strijp-S. Building upon their six weeks residency at Baltan Laboratories and Trudo, the designers continued exploring the role of design and creative practices in shaping the identities and social relationships of the inhabitants of Strijp-S.

    The gentrification and commercialization of public space, the convergence of urban and media space and the use of information and algorithmic technologies in cities has been rapidly developing in the last years. To understand the impact that such processes have on the identities, behaviours and relationships of inhabitants it is not sufficient to problematize current cultural or political debates. Instead, it is crucial to understand the role of design in the development of contemporary urban space.

    Employing anthropological and design research methodologies, and operating from queer and intersectional frameworks, the designers examined during their residency how urban infrastructures in the Strijp-S area (re)produce identities, orient behavior and what are the power relationships that arise in this context. In the process, the designers involved key stakeholders and community members of Strijp-S such as organizations, inhabitants, students and urban planners.

    Watch the four chapters of their live presentation 'Infrastructures for Objection' below.


    test lexicon


    Economia is the festival of


    Chapter 1 : Strijp-S: Factory 2.0


    Chapter 2: Bodies as / entangled within infrastructures


    Chapter 3: A picture perfect society


    Chapter 4: Active process of accountability & critical reflection

    About the designers:
    Roberto Pérez Gayo and Gabriel .A. Maher are a collaborative duo of designers, with interdisciplinary backgrounds in architecture, social design, interaction design and diversity work, their practice center on critical, analytical and participatory approaches to design and research. Their work considers the effects of design and designing on bodies and the shaping of identity. Operating from queer and intersectional frameworks, they investigate relationships between bodies and spaces and examine the technologies and infrastructures that participate in their construction. Their collaborative work has focused in recent years on public space and architectural hybrids where computational technologies, media, and architecture meet.

    About the project:
    The project 'Infrastructures for Objection' is part of the residency trajectory The Future of Strijp-S, organized by Baltan Laboratories and Trudo. Baltan and Trudo have established this residency on the future of housing and urban development to stimulate crossovers and experimentation, as well as to initiate new collaborations. The program acts as a driver for talent development for professional creatives, with a focus on social issues.

    Participatory Research Event:
    Adi Ticho, Bianca Carague, Charly Blödel, Daniel Parnitzke, Matilde Patuelli, Roberta Di Cosmo, Sun Yichun, Mark Wang, Yun-Ting Chou, Anna Jakob, Qiaochu Guo, Manon Aubry, Samein Shamsher, Serina Tarkhanian, Marta Rios Piza, Coline Declef, Alina Natalia Słup, Anna Iversen [Students of Social Design Masters | 2nd Year | Design Academy Eindhoven]

    More information:
    This research trajectory is part of the theme Homo Socialis in which Baltan Laboratories interrogates the ever-increasing gap between our individualistic society and human desire to be part of a larger community.

    This project is part of a multiyear collaboration trajectory between Baltan Laboratories and Trudo, kindly supported by Creative Industries Fund NL, Provincie Noord-Brabant and Stichting Cultuur Eindhoven.

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