Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #15
On the Surface: Timber and Plastic
On the surface, timber, plastics and other materials have become essential for preventing contagion with Covid-19. Yet their industries continue to aggravate the degradation of ecosystems, closely intertwined with the rise of pandemics to begin with. This newsletter brings to the surface a selection of design projects that respond to the changing role of material industries in current social and ecological crises.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #15
Queer Mental Health and Safer Spaces
The past Pride Month, June 2020, differed from the usual commemoration of the Stonewall riots —one of the main events leading to the TQLGBIA+ struggle for equal rights, and its yearly celebration by members of the TQLGBIA+ community. The signs of exhaustion of the system in place had become even more evident.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #14
The Unusual in the Everyday
During the week of 6 to 11 July 2020, Het Nieuwe Instituut is celebrating the opening of two exhibitions with a series of online events. Atelier Nelly and Theo van Doesburg and Gijs Bakker & K. Schippers: Basics can then be visited from 11 July at the institute and Sonneveld House respectively.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #13
Neufert's 1.5 Metre
The Covid-19 pandemic has directly contributed to an increased awareness of the different movements of various bodies in public space. At the same time, in the Netherlands social distancing has led to the introduction of a single standard which is imposed on all of society: the 1.5 metre rule. This recalls the rational control of society based on uniform solutions that make public life possible, yet at the same time contribute to detrimental forms of exclusion.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #12
Regeneration. New Institutional Practices
Through its annual Fellowship programme, Het Nieuwe Instituut acknowledges and gives visibility to research projects offering departures from established modes of thinking. For this iteration, the Open Call for Fellows focuses on the theme Regeneration. New Institutional Practices. Following previous calls on the body’s burn-out (2018) and planetary exhaustion (2019), the 2020 programme invites collectives to take current conditions of burn-out and exhaustion as a point of departure to generate forms of collective organisation and action.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #11
Following the tragic death of George Floyd, action has been taken in various ways, in different guises and in countless places, against racism and police brutality. Floyd’s death should not be interpreted as an isolated or quintessentially American incident. Just as the recent outbreak of Covid-19 does not stand alone, but should be seen as a result of the systematic destruction of various ecosystems, once again current events dramatically demonstrate the structural nature of racial violence.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online/Offline #10
While Het Nieuwe Instituut has developed alternative formats, remaining open online, it’s now also possible to physically reopen on 1 June, thanks to the reduced pressure on healthcare. However, the protocol and various measures required mean that we can welcome fewer visitors than before. This has prompted us to develop more hybrid programming in the near future, based on online and offline elements.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #9
Music videos have always been both commercial tool and boundary-pushing medium. They expose dominant narratives and socio-political issues, question cultural norms and offer artists an often experimental space for depicting alternative realities. Now that Covid-19 means that we have to live confined and distanced from each other, video platforms ensure that we can continue to gather together and attend performances of live music.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #8
Flowers seduce us, flowers astonish us. They are often ascribed a romantic or ritual meaning and may even have medicinal properties. Yet millions of flowers have been destroyed every day since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Because of Covid-19, the Dutch flower industry, which generates billions in turnover, is experiencing a drastic decrease in the worldwide demand for flowers. This is affecting the whole chain, from the grower and the auction to the designers, including the florist.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #7
In recent years, the market has viewed the home interior primarily as the personal domain for all kinds of luxury marketing. The shower, for instance, was required to become a ‘personal spa’, where the exhausted body would be not so much cleansed as totally revitalised. And for the less fortunate among us, there was always the scented candle to lend an aura of peace and contemplation to every laundry room.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #6
As people all over the world are forced to quarantine, self-isolate and socially distance from others because of the coronavirus pandemic, the need for rituals of community, solidarity and belonging is greater than ever. Over the coming months, Het Nieuwe Instituut will present an online programme in the spirit of the installation G/D THYSELF: Spirit Strategy on Raising Free Black Children.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #5
“Only together will we get corona under control,” is the slogan on the backdrop of the space where the Dutch Prime Minister, ministers, and experts give their press briefings. It’s interesting how this phrase sounds completely self-evident, yet still raises big questions – for example, about the word ‘control’, the combination of ‘only’ and ‘together’, and the word ‘we’. Who is we, actually?
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #4
Now that The Hoodie exhibition in its physical form is temporarily closed, this newsletter focuses on hoodies in a different way – as seen in the home, on the street and on Het Nieuwe Instituut’s website. The hooded jumper has a lot to say about the times we live in. It tells us about social inequality, youth culture and different subcultures; about racism, privacy and fear – and of course, about style too.
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #3
As the Covid-19 pandemic forces millions of people around the world to radically reorganise their lives — from practising “social distancing,” to self-isolating, quarantining, working remotely, or shifting education to virtual spaces — data production, consumption and aggregation are growing exponentially. What are the implications of this data explosion, and why does it matter for humans and non-humans, even under the current dire circumstances?
Het Nieuwe Instituut Online #2
Het Nieuwe Instituut, designers, performers, researchers and theorists consider the various ways we can work from home and the impact it has on our lives, the creative solutions that come from it, the financially precarious situation for many cultural entrepreneurs, the urgent need to commission freelancers and the various ways that we, as an institute, can contribute to fostering a healthy cultural scene.