The Independent School for the City is a school in, of, and for the city. It builds on the conviction that strategies for the city - architectural and economic, spatial and social - should be based on real, first hand, empirical research. The Independent School for the City offers a variety of post-graduate educational programmes ranging from shorter one-day workshops and masterclasses, one or two-week studio's to an intensive 3 month programme on contemporary Urbanism. Below we'll give you and overview of our upcoming activities.
19 - 30 JUL 2021 Summer School in collaboration with Alfredo Brillembourg
In this studio we will explore new development strategies for collective affordable housing in Rotterdam together with architect Alfredo Brillembourg and Tessa Steenkamp of Urban Think Tank Design Partners. After an introduction to Rotterdam’s housing market, its contemporary challenges and its affordable housing legacy, and conversations with various stakeholders involved, we will collectively develop a speculative housing proposal for a mixed-use community of about 80 households and additional facilities on a given location in the city. Each person will bring in his own requirements and (financial) capacities and contribute to the collective sum of wishes and limitations. The course will result in a project proposal: a prototype for a collective building including a spatial sketch, a financial model and ideas for the social life and interaction of the collective. The presentation will include an illustrated ‘letter to the mayor’ as a collective manifesto to explain what is needed to truly realize affordable housing in Rotterdam.
31 JAN - 22 APR 2022 An intensive 12 week education programme on contemporary urbanism. Apply before 01 November 2021
This intensive course in contemporary urbanism takes the modern city as its subject and Rotterdam as its testing ground. During 12 full weeks we'll explore the inescapable contradictions and complexities of the modern city by bringing together different disciplines from historical research to artistic expression. Collectively we will explore the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead of us, but also look explicitly at the character of the city, which is not only defined by its trendy restaurants and iconic buildings, but also by its sharp edges. We'll embrace it as a place that can be old, new, dirty and beautiful at the same time. It is this complexity that we love, and which simultaneously poses challenges for our city. This intensive programme includes a series of lectures, excursions and workshops focusing on specific research methods and pressing social issues. Three thematic workshops will form the backbone of the course: Inequality in a Superdiverse City, Crime as part of a Global Network and Citizens of the Anthropocene. Application deadline 31 October 2021!
07 SEPT - 07 OCT 2021 With Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam
The Independent School for the City and the Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam (AFFR) have joined forces again to organize another edition of the online film and architecture studio, supervised by architect, curator and filmmaker Jord den Hollander. The online Film and Architecture Studio offers a comprehensive way to use cinematic language in architecture and urban design. It is a hands-on studio that focuses on learning and understanding the narrative of filmmaking as a way to explore the built environment. Participants in this course are introduced to the essential elements of filmmaking and learn how to relate these to architecture and the city. The focus of the studio is not so much on the technical aspects of filmmaking and postproduction, but rather on film as a way to structure your thoughts and to turn your findings into a gripping story. Throughout the period of a month, the participants conduct research in their immediate surroundings while discussing their progress and ideas through weekly online meetings. Internationally renowned filmmakers will be invited for a presentation, and if possible, we will eventually get together in Rotterdam for the festive screening of the short movies and to attend the opening of the Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam in October.
18 - 22 OCT 2021 with Peter Veenstra (LOLA Landscape Architecture)
Planting trees has become a popular project for local and national governments all around the world. It’s contributing to combatting climate change, and everyone loves the forest. But not all forests are the same. There are happy forests and sad forests. Productive forests and harmful forests. So, the question is: how can we make a valuable forest? How can we use this movement to create better living environments for everyone? In this workshop we will focus on afforestation within the city limits of Rotterdam. Can we turn Rotterdam into an inhabitable forest? What would it mean for the city? And what are the limitations? In line with today’s spirit, the workshop will lead to real action: planting trees in Rotterdam. More info will follow soon
15 - 19 NOV 2021 with Crimson Historians & Urbanists
Our cities and are increasingly defined by the dynamics of temporary inhabitants. Whether we are rich expats, hard working labour migrants, young international students or refugees. Climate change, armed conflicts, oppressive governments and a globalised economy keep us constantly on the move. During this studio we will look at the city of Rotterdam in terms of migration and mobility instead of the cliché of settlement and stability. Building upon the research by Crimson Historians & Urbanists, which resulted in the publication “A City of Comings and Goings” (2018), participants will work in groups to carefully investigate the different aspects of migration such as their representation in culture and media, trajectories, policies and legislation, job opportunities, their accommodation options, and existing and preferred amenities of the migrants. We’ll use newspaper clippings, maps, interviews and all possible means to get an as detailed as possible understanding of migration in Rotterdam.
10/11/12 DEC 2021 in collaboration with Bart Gorter and Ernst van der Hoeven
From the beginning of civilization,weaving has played a cultural and artistic role in societies worldwide. Also the economic and scientific influence of the design and technology of looms has been significant: more than two centuries ago, the first punch cards were used on looms, which can rightfully be seen as the prerunners of the computer and formed the basis for the industrial revolution. This course offers the participants an exploration into the three-dimensional meaning of weaving on a huge, traditional Finnish weaving loom. It is a communal journey for which the Independent School for the City has teamed up with visual artists Bart Gorter and Ernst van der Hoeven, to understand the principles of weaving and to discover it as a metaphor for urban planning, for architecture and urbanism, for the computer, for the landscape and many more things. The course will result in one large monumental rug, collectively woven by the participants. Participants will extend the rug by weaving individually.