Open Call for the Whole Life Academy at HKW Berlin and Haus der Statistik

Nov. 12, 2020

What strategies of commoning, collectivity and solidarity can archives offer in the face of health, economic, natural and political crises? How can local narratives, archival objects and biographies contained within archives be made legible for today? How do our current human and non-human relations shape the ways in which archives are built and function?

Taking the archive as a public space of assembly in which the material and non-material foundations of the present are both created and contested, a second edition of The Whole Life Academy is set to take place at HKW and Haus der Statistik in Berlin from April 18–22, 2021.

an abstract, close up photograph of an old and slightly damaged white radiator next to a shelf with a dozen black archival binders, each with an orange label on it

Whole Life Academy Dresden, 2019 // Photo: Laura Fiorio

Embedded in an international long-term research process, the Academy in April 2021 offers a week-long local program combining excursions, seminars and archival viewings. In 10 different workshops, archives are taken as the premise from which participants will reformulate an understanding of contemporary and historical practices of collecting, gathering and distancing. Taking up urgent questions on decolonizing archives and unfolding marginalized narrations, the workshops propose and test alternative forms of access to archival material. The Academy’s workshops connect theory, practice and on-site research in a continuously developing nomadic curriculum that seeks to think along with the possibilities and limits of both analogue and digital tools of rereading, sharing and researching archives.

The workshops feature a curated program of site visits across the cultural and natural topography of Berlin as well as guest contributions from activists, archivists and artists including Alice Creischer and Andreas Siekmann, Doreen Mende, Adam Jasper Smith, Anna-Sophie Springer, Florian Wüst and Vadim Zakharov, among others. The week-long curriculum of the Academy will be accompanied by a public evening program and will be followed by a congress at HKW from April 22–24, 2021.

The call for participation is addressed to scholars and practitioners from a wide range of disciplines including the arts, humanities, social and natural sciences, design and architecture. The Academy promotes an interdisciplinary working environment and welcomes applications from masters and doctoral students, artists, writers, researchers, curators, journalists, activists, or from professionals working within institutions with collections, archives, or other systems of knowledge.

Participation in The Whole Life Academy is free of charge and meals are covered throughout the week. Participants are expected to finance their own travel costs and accommodation. HKW can support participants in their possible applications for travel grants or funding.

Application Info
Deadline: Jan. 15, 2021

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