Individual Project

Critical by Design?

Academy of Art and Design FHNW, Basel (CH)

Anja Groten gives a presentation at the conference 'Critical By Design?' at the Academy of Art and Design FHNW in Basel.

This two-day international research conference on the capacity of design as a mode of critique offers a unique platform for the interdisciplinary discussion of critical theories and practices from a design perspective. Renowned experts from design theory, history and practice, the philosophy of technology, the art, cultural and media studies as well as the field of human-computer interaction come together to reconsider historical trajectories, advance contemporary understandings and propose future developments of design as a materialized form of critique.

In her talk ‘ctrl+c’, Groten will propose hands-on modes of learning about technology from the perspective of design practice, calling into question techno-optimist notions such as ‘innovation’. Strategies of Critical Making are hereby put forward as means to force quit (ctrl+c) and reevaluate accelerated technological processes. Practicing critically can be seen as practicing in ‘a state of suspicion and alertness’, a condition of not-yet knowing – ref. Rita Felski’s The Limits of Critique (2015). Situations of collaborative making turn into sites for exercising positions: opposing, contradicting and confronting. Could design – through initiating and cultivating oppositional forces during making processes – move toward a breaking of habits and practicing of new critical routines?