NOT PRETTY BUT THICK: The Serendipitous Dump

Commercial Practices

Social Practices

LocationSocial Design DAE
  • Aymeric Mansoux
  • Clara Balaguer
  • Affiliated research project


    Re-situating the value of everyday tools and the dump—a mass of loosely (un)organized collection of means and information that index a labor in progress—as a valuable framework to a) publish art and design research and b) be strategic with its circulation.


    This workshop invites you to reflect upon two overlooked notions that we believe are crucial to explore publishing beyond its conventional forms and formats: the dump and everyday tools.

    • DUMP: The term dump refers to the mass of loosely (un)organized information that indexes a labor in progress. Said differently, it is everything that, often in traditional art and design workflows,  situates/generates the final work and yet may never be a valid part of it. Our working hypothesis is that the dump is instead a crucial element that can help understand and rethink the act of publishing and archiving. The dump also questions the overlap and differences between artistic and scientific publishing and its codes of propriety, beauty, and linearity. It questions what is considered valuable for publics/intention/audiences.
    • EVERYDAY TOOLS : Tool shaming is an attempt to enforce a class hierarchy on values, aesthetics and interfaces through judgements on what is “ethical”, desirable, or professional. These moral judgements prevents us from profoundly addressing how (so-called professional) tools of the trade and established design workflows are informing the final choice of media and format. Can we envision a publishing practice relying solely on everyday tools? Not as a fetishistic exercise but as a tender acceptance to all levels of literacy, access, and education. We cast light on the overlooked potentials and qualities of office suites, social media apps, plaintext files and scripting/programming environments that readily available on any operating system.

    The aim of this workshop will be to help you rethink your publishing materials, your editorial process, the tools you intend to use. Ultimately, this workshop wants to help engage with outcomes—in both form and circulation—that canonical design education (or biases from the industry in general) may have extinguished from our imagination.

    During two days, we will present some practices that we believe are illustrative of this approach, and we will also facilitate discussion/prototyping on:

    • figuring out what to do with your dump;
    • what constitutes your everyday tools;
    • circulation in relation to intellectual property;
    • what kind of formats and media your publishing practice could be producing; and
    • why this is relevant to the audience you would like to reach.


    Dissemblage.Making Multiplicity, not Identities 06.12.2023

    Members of the Promiscuous Care Study Group and the Erasmus School of Philosophy in conversation with Gerald Raunig (Zurich University of the Arts). 

    12/06/2023 // 17:00

    Talk and Screening – with Dora Garcia -06-12-2023

    A screening and Q&A with filmmaker Dora Garcia in the Cinema viewing room. at 17:00 on 6 December.

    The Q&A is at 18:45.

    12/06/2023 // 17:00

    Book presentation: Lumbung, commons and Community Art – 25-11-2023

    This event celebrates the publication ‘Lumbung, Commons & Community Art: a conversation on behind the scenes of documenta fifteen’ with Florian Cramer and Simon Kentgens, and introduces HumDrumPress and its commons-based publishing model and project, to the world.

    11/25/2023 // 16:00

    Workshop: How to Counter-map Autonomy and Self-organization -Iconoclasistas & WdKA Autonomy – Lab 16-11-23

    On the 16th of November, Research Center WdKA’s Autonomy Lab and Roodkapje carry out a ‘counter-mapping’ workshop, under the guidance of the Argentinian researcher/designer/activist duo, Iconoclasistas. Iconoclasistas are participating via teleconferencing. Participation is free and open to anyone.

    11/16/2023 // 12:00