Brave New Alps

Taking a Line for a Walk

Totally forgot to post about this. We’re thrilled to be part of this inspirational book project by Nina Paim, Corinne Gisel and Emilia Bergmark with two briefs for design students we proposed a few years back on different occasions. The first for a workshop at Architecture, Royal College of Art and the other one for a workshop at Graphic Design, UWE Bristol.

Explorations in Urban Practice

Thank you Rosario Talevi and Markus Bader of raumlaborberlin for including us in the newly published book “Explorations in Urban Practice” in the Urban School Ruhr series with a conversation around practices of commoning. Still have to dive into it, but it looks super promising!

Projekt Bauhaus

We’re excited to be involved in Projekt Bauhaus until September 2018.

We just came back from Berlin, where we contributed to the panel discussion “Spaces of Knowledge” and designed the last session, an informal exchange between the speakers, the curators and the audience with food and drinks we brought from the Vallagarina and that were provided by small organic producers we are collaborating with in the district. We had wine from Eugenio Rosi; cheese, jam, juices and olives from Elisabetta Monti (La Fonte); and more cheese and sausages from Fabio Manfredi.

Over the next year we will be collaborating with Jesko Fezer and his students from the Studio Experimentelles Design at the HFBK in Hamburg to develop a new project within the research framework of COMUNfARE.

@ Beyond Change – Swiss Design Network Conference

Together with Decolonising Design and Depatriarchise Design, we will be activating a discussion platform during the Swiss Design Network Conference Beyond Change on 8-10 March 2018. Thanks to Nina Paim for inviting us into this space.

Let’s go!

You can follow the construction of Hospital/ity on the facebook event page. There we’ll post all the updates and pictures.

Building the Hospital/ity Box

Everything is set for this Saturday. Thanks to all the people who supported the project through the crowdfunding campaign earlier this year, a huge donation of yellow boards and a great space that was given to us for free we’re finally ready to start building! The modular structure, designed by Area527, will be built in Rovereto over 6 intensive collective construction weekends, in order to be then shipped to Rosarno in southern Italy, where it will be assembled in one of the several ghettos in which thousands of exploited crop pickers live. It will work as a place to run language classes, and as a medical and legal support point run dy the different activist groups working in the area. The project is a collaboration between Collettivo Mamadou, Area 527 and us. If you are around one of those days, get in touch!

Projekt Bauhaus – Vorkurs, Werkstatt, Begräbnis

The year 2019 will mark the centenary of the foundation of the Bauhaus. To celebrate this occasion, a transdisciplinary, international group of experts working to a five-year plan initiated project bauhaus, the aim being to take critical stock of the ideas of the Bauhaus and to render the utopian surplus of the Bauhaus productive for the present.

We are pleased to be contributing to Projekt Bauhaus betwen 2017 and 2018. Initiated by ARCH+, between 2015 and 2019, Projekt Bauhaus offers a new question to debate every year to invite experimental inquiry into a renewal of art, design and architecture in relation to contemporary society.


Just noticed that we never mentioned on here that for almost two years now we have been collaborating with other 8 associations on the project comun’Orto, a community garden in Rovereto. Please see all the activities we organised there on the facebook page of the project (a proper website is on its way). The beautiful posthumanist identity was designed by our friend Gaja Mežnaric Osole.

Papanek Symposium 2017

Pleased to be contributing to this year’s Papanek Symposium on ‘Design and Ethics’ hosted at the Austrian Embassy in London.

The symposium is directed by Alison J. Clarke and co-organised by Leah Armstrong.

The Climate Change of Work


Together with Paolo Plotegher, we will be running a 3-day workshop at the Trojan Horse Summerschool on the Finnish island Bengtsår. Looking forward to this!

Hospital(ity) school – please help with crowdfunding

We need your help to support a crowdfunding campaign for a project we are involved in.

For a few months now, we have been collaborating with an activist collective from Bolzano, who are running Italian courses in the ghettos of Southern Italy, where thousands of heavily exploited crop pickers live in horrible conditions – you may have heard of Rosarno. These are the people who pick the oranges and tangerines, but also many other agricultural products that we daily consume all over Europe.

About a year ago, the collective, called “Mamadou”, started to run language classes in these places – the mastering of Italian being identified as the most important means for self-emancipation.

Now, our plan is to build a modular structure (this was designed by an Italian collective of socially-engaged architects) in Rovereto, with the help of a group of asylum seekers. The ‘shack’ will then be shipped to Rosarno with the help of SOS Rosarno and assembled in the ghetto next to the town. The structure, which will be run by different engaged groups from all over Italy, will host an Italian school and a medical and legal assistance point.

As many of you know, since 2016 we have been setting up QuerciaLAB, a “community maker space” in Rovereto (see picture below), where we organise activities around making, the commons, and community economies, involving asylum seekers, local inhabitants and international guests. The space now hosts a fully-equipped wood workshop, where we plan to build the structure’s modules.

Therefore, we are now trying to raise money to realise this ambitious project. And for this we need your help!

You can donate as much as you want directly over the crowdfunding page: For donations of 20€ and above there is a nice little treat :)

Please download the architectural project here, so you can get a better idea of what’s boiling in the pot.

Also, it would be really great if you could help us spread this campaign as widely as possible through your social networks.

Thank you very much for contributing to make this happen!!

Making Commons Work | Medea Vox

The idea of commons describes practices that rely on sharing and collaboration. But how do you make commons work in practice, and not just in theory?

Traditionally, commons was about sharing natural resources such as land or woods. More recently, the idea of commons is used to describe a growing number of practices that rely on sharing and collaboration, from urban gardening to the production of open source software.

In this Medea Vox episode, Bianca discusses with design researcher Anna Seravalli how to work practically with commons and commoning.

Thanks to Richard Toopgard for the editing work.

By Design or By Disaster 2017

In a few days we’ll be contributing with a talk and a workshop to the upcoming By Design or By Disaster conference, at the Faculty of Design and Art of the Free University of Bolzano-Bozen. Very glad to see that our interest for the economies of eco-social design resonates.

… these are the slides of our presentation:

Alpine Commons with Studio Rural+

Between October 2016 and March 2017, together with Hannes Langguth and his group of MA students of Studio Rural+, hosted at the Habitat Unit of the Technical University Berlin, we are exploring the Alpine commons in the Vallagarina district (IT). The intention of this collaboration is to trigger experiments exploring new ways of living and working based on local commons and a collaborative society. How can architects, planners and designers help to imagine new forms of commoning?


QuerciaLAB – community economies research and resource centre

In the framework of the research COMUNfARE, since September 2016, we are working on setting up QuerciaLAB, a community economies research and resource centre in Rovereto (IT). As the Centre starts out, it is hosted in a disused industrial space (200m²), which is part of a complex of buildings that have been re-functioned in 2015 in order to host up to 80 asylum seekers. The Centre is conceived as a multifunctional space that will grow into an interface that through ‘making’, research and culture fosters the creation of alternative socio-economic relations between old and new inhabitants of the Vallagarina district and beyond.


The initial building workshops have been run in collaboration with MA students from the Sheffield School of Architecture and members of the Erasmus Plus network Ecole_IG in the framework of a Live Project.

We are working on the centre in collaboration with the co-operative Punto D’Approdo and have so far been sustained by Cinformi, Festool, Doka and an Erasmus+ grant through the Ecole_IG network.

We’re currently also working on QuerciaLAB’s own website – designed by Gaja Meznaric-Osole and programmed by Blaz Beuermann.

Exploring Territories – talk & workshop

We’re delighted to contribute to Exploring Territories, the Graphic Design Educators’ Network second annual conference, which will explore the physical, intellectual and existential terrain of design learning and teaching.

9 September 2016
Cardiff School of Art and Design – B Block, Cardiff Metropolitan University Western Avenue, Cardiff, CF5 2YB

And these are the slides of our presentation:

Urban Heat: Art Data and Activism


The Right to the (New) City: Art, New Towns and The Commons


On the 6th July we’ll contribute to the symposium “The Right to the (New) City: Art, New Towns and The Commons”, organised by Claire Louise Staunton for MK Gallery in Milton Keynes, UK. We’ll share some thoughts on the commons, commoning and community economies and how these concepts and related frameworks are currently relevant for our doing and research and how we are trying to activate them in practice.

At DRS2016, Brighton, 27-30 June


We’re in Brighton for different activities taking place in the framework of this year’s DRS conference – Design + Research + Society:

On Monday 27 June, together with Maria Portugal and Alison Thomson, Bianca coordinates a PhD by Design event “The Future of Design Research”

On Wednesday 29 June, Bianca is contributing to the conversation “Design as symbolic violence. Design for social justice”, organised by Jody Boehnert.

Also on Wednesday, together with Valeria Graziano and Kim Trogal, Bianca is coordinating the paper presentation strand “The Politics of Commoning and Design”, in which we’re presenting the paper “Commons and Community Economies: Entry Points to Design for Eco-social Justice?”

Making academic careers together. Recruitment, precariousness and gender


On the 24th May, we’ll coordinate the workshop “Making academic careers together. Recruitment, precariousness and gender”, which takes place in the context of the research project “Garcia” and COOP 2016 – XII International Conference on the Design of Cooperative Systems, hosted by the Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science of the University of Trento.

The one-day workshop explores the precarisation of work in academia and its intersections with the gender dimensions, a growing phenomenon in the last decade, with significant consequences in terms of intellectual development, continuity of streams of thinking and researchers’ well-being.

Here the manifesto that resulted from the two workshop sessions: