2020 ArkDes Fellowship
Our Living Environment: 2020 ArkDes Fellowship
Call for Fellows
The 2020 ArkDes Fellowship will be dedicated to the theme, Our Living Environment, with a focus on investigative projects exploring challenges and opportunities facing future places, societies and cities.
In 2020 the ArkDes Fellowship offers practitioners, researchers, educators, artists and communicators operating in or around the fields of architecture, form and design an opportunity to undertake interdisciplinary research, within the theme Our Living Environment, at ArkDes, the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design. A total of three ArkDes Fellowships will be offered in 2020, providing space and resources to conduct exploratory work at ArkDes in Stockholm, for a duration of six months, full-time (with a formal start and end in March and November 2020, respectively, and flexibility to work in between these dates).
While the Fellowship application process requires a stipulated or tangible outcome, we expect any possible result of the programme to develop during the Fellows’ time at ArkDes, and from conversation with our curators, researchers and guests. We are excited by the unconventional, experimental and contextually rich; proposals that can concisely advocate for an original position while, at the same time, offer convincing methodologies for research, communication and dissemination.
Architecture and design affects us all on a daily basis, and the power of well-designed living environment is undisputed. The responsibility of creating these environments is shared by many. The complexity of spaces, places and cities however makes this a difficult task. How can conflicting interests be organised as a whole? How can old and new interests meet in a fruitful way? What spaces can host both artistic quality and a feeling of belonging for citizens? ArkDes invites Fellowship proposals that challenge preconceived ideas, within the theme Our Living Environment, both in topic and in research methodology.
About ArkDes Research and Development
In accordance with the Swedish Government Bill, Policy for Designed Living Environments (Politik för gestaltad livsmiljö (Prop. 2017/18:110)), ArkDes has been assigned the task to follow-up and evaluate, strengthen knowledge on, and promote interest in, architecture, form and design values and significance for both individuals and social development at large. The objective of this policy is to facilitate a sustainable, equal and less segregated society through carefully designed living environments, where everyone is given good opportunity to influence the development of the built environment.
In order to work with this task, ArkDes has received funding for research to increase knowledge on how architecture, design and planning impacts people and society. Through the ArkDes Think Tank function, ArkDes conducts continuous analysis and makes thematic assessments on issues where there are knowledge gaps or target conflicts. Such impacts may relate to the cultural environment, public art, segregation and sustainable development.
Within this work there is an opportunity for three guest researchers (Fellows) to spend six months, full-time (with a formal start and end in March and November 2020, respectively, and flexibility to work in between these dates) at ArkDes as part of the 2020 ArkDes Fellowship. The aim is to broaden discussion and collaboration in building new knowledge on how architecture and design can contribute to finding solutions for complex urban and societal challenges particularly those that relate to the cultural environment, public art, segregation and sustainable development.
Located in central Stockholm, ArkDes provides an arena for debate and discussion about the future of architecture, design and citizenship. Concurrent to our role as a museum, ArkDes is also a government authority with a unique mandate to advise, impact, and imagine future urban policies in Sweden. We care for and work with a significant national architecture collection and support a platform dedicated to studying and responding to contemporary urban and societal challenges.
This body of internationally acclaimed practitioners, curators and researchers will collectively assess proposals pre-selected by an internal ArkDes review committee.
Fellows will have access to resources within ArkDes, including the library, collection, workspaces, and staff members.
A full-time equivalent monthly salary of 33 000 SEK (before taxation) will be made available to successful applicants for the six month Fellowship period, along with one round-trip travel from their country of residence. Fellows will be responsible for finding their own accommodation in Stockholm.
- You must be available to spend a minimum of three months of the six month Fellowship period at ArkDes in Stockholm.
- High competence in English is essential. While it will not affect the decision of the jury, knowledge of Swedish would be an advantage in engaging with some of the material in our library and collection as well as national, regional and local level architecture, design and urban planning policies and strategies.
- We do not request a CV, letters of recommendation, or a portfolio of work.
- Applicants must have current and valid work rights in Sweden from the formal start date of the Fellowship period (March 2020). At this time ArkDes is unable to support visa applications.
- The call is open to individuals only. No partnerships or groups will be accepted.
- There is no age limit for applicants.
- There is no entry fee to apply.
Successful applicants will formally begin their Fellowship in March 2020. The Fellowship period will formally end in November 2020.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the eligibility requirements for the 2020 ArkDes Fellowship?
Applicants must have current and valid work rights in Sweden from the formal start date of the Fellowship period (March 2020). At this time ArkDes is unable to support visa applications.
The Fellowship is open to applicants from any field working in or around architecture and design. All applications must be aligned with the broad theme of the Call for Fellows and the practical guidelines outlined on this page.
Can partnerships or groups apply?
The 2020 ArkDes Fellowship is only open to individual applicants. No partnerships or groups will be accepted.
Do I/we have to be in Stockholm?
We expect Fellows to spend at least three months of the six month Fellowship period at ArkDes, in Stockholm. Shared working space in ArkDes will be available for all Fellows in order to facilitate interaction and collaboration with ArkDes staff.
What is financially covered by the programme?
Discussions about divisions and procedure of payments will be discussed and negotiated with each individual independently.
ArkDes will cover one round-trip travel from the Fellow’s country of residence and will be able to provide a modest production budget.
Fellows will be responsible for finding their own accommodation in Stockholm. As this can be difficult it is suggested that applicants look into this early in the process.
Should applications be directly relevant to Sweden?
Proposals must address large-scale themes relevant to Sweden.
We ask for a stipulated outcome/output in applications. How research might be presented or communicated will be discussed independently, dependent on the project.
All applications will be pre-selected based on guidelines (the submission requirements) by an internal ArkDes review committee.
Following pre-selection, an independent jury will have the final decision on second-round applications.
ArkDes and the independent jury will assess proposals against the following selection criteria:
- Degree of interdisciplinary and exploratory focus
- Originality of thought; unconventionality and/or experimental nature
- Convincing methodology
- Relationship to the theme, global issues and those pertinent to the broader Swedish context
- Expected findings and outcomes
The jury will be chaired by Kieran Long, ArkDes Director, and the ArkDes Think Tank team.
Jury members from within Sweden and abroad include:
Liza Fior, London
Maria Lind, Berlin
Åsa Dahlin, Uppsala
Dan Hill, Stockholm
Applications that do not meet the submission requirements will not be considered by ArkDes or the independent jury. All applicants will be notified by email of the jury’s final decision.
You can direct further questions related to the Call for Fellows to email@example.com.
A written research proposal which should be no more than 750 words and formatted onto a single A4 page (page 1). The research proposal must include:
- Background including the need for the research
- Methodology including case studies
- Time plan
- Expected findings and outcomes
- A maximum of five keywords.
A written biography of no more than 250 words, which should be formatted onto a second single A4 page (page 2). The written biography must include:
- Current occupation
- A list of the applicant’s five most important works (such as completed projects and research studies) relevant to the ArkDes Fellowship programme.
Supplemental information, i.e. images, which should number no more than three additional A4 pages (pages 3-5). Captions to images should be no longer than one sentence per image.
Your application must be written in English.
Submissions, including a written research proposal, biography and supplemental information should be prepared as a single PDF file at a maximum file size of 15MB and uploaded via the ArkDes website. An online submission form will also request your name, year of birth, sex, contact details (e-mail address, telephone number and address), and answers to select questions.
As ArkDes is a government authority, your application becomes a public document when it is received by ArkDes. This means that the application documents can be requested by any member of the public.
Questions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Deadline for applications (online): 8 December 2019 at 23.59 Stockholm time
- Pre-selected applications delivered to the jury by the ArkDes internal review committee: Week 50, December 2019
- Deadline for the jury’s first grading: 20 January 2020
- Jury meeting at ArkDes in Stockholm: 29-30 January 2020
- Invitations sent to Fellows: 31 January 2020
- Public announcement of Fellows: February 2020
- 2020 ArkDes Fellowship: March–November 2020 (six months, full-time, with a formal start and end in March and November 2020, respectively, and flexibility to work in between these dates)
2020 ArkDes Fellows
The second ArkDes Call for Fellows surrounding the theme, Our Living Environment, held between November and December 2019 attracted around 70 applications by practitioners, researchers, artists and communicators. A total of three Fellows, selected by an international jury, will join ArkDes for a six month period in 2020.
While each application addressed the theme, Our Living Environment, proposals covered a wide array of topics focused on visions for tackling challenges in built and non-urban environments. An international jury comprising Liza Fior (London), Maria Lind (Berlin), Åsa Dahlin (Uppsala) och Dan Hill (Stockholm), and chaired by ArkDes Director Kieran Long and Research Coordinator Ann Maudsley, collectively assessed proposals during a seminar at ArkDes in January 2020.
Below is an outline of the three 2020 ArkDes Fellows and a link to their projects selected by the jury.
Re-living (in) the lost modern utopia. The global village of Svappavaara
“During my career, my research has ranged from the analysis of the indoor climate in historic buildings and museums, to the assessment of the impacts of different energy retrofitting strategies on built heritage values, to the conservation of modern architecture. Since moving to northern Sweden in 2017, I have broadened my interests to the impacts of resource extraction activities in local mining towns and to how these structural changes are affecting the preservation and management of built heritage.
At Politecnico di Milano I participated in the development of the conservation plan for De Carlo’s Collegi in Urbino. During my time at Luleå University of Technology I have taken part in the Swedish national research program on energy efficiency in historic buildings Spara och Bevara and I am currently leading the pilot project 2Best on the sustainable long-term management of building stocks with cultural significance. I have also studied and discussed the concept of resilience for the preservation of built heritage.
The proposed project starts from my background as a building conservator and from my interest in the preservation of 20th century architecture, while the choice of Svappavaara as a case study is a result of my recent research on the impacts of resource extraction activities on the historic environments of northern Sweden.”
“A highly ambitious, interdisciplinary and exploratory applied in-situ research project focusing on a place with complex histories and futures. It captures key societal, architectural, heritage and economic challenges; migration, diversity, identity and an understanding of how to excavate and reinterpret value in earlier exemplary Swedish architecture and urbanism”.
Intention and effect: A study of official Swedish in the planning process
Since 2012, Katja Rosenlind has edited the kind of public documents which are the subject of her research project. At the Real Estate Administration of the City of Stockholm – the body tasked with advising the City’s politicians on property matters and implementing decisions linked to the domain – Katja has ensured the quality of the written information upon which political decisions are made. With the project Intention and effect – which studies the field between language, architecture and urban environment – Katja hopes to contribute to a deeper understanding on how the authority’s way to communicate could be developed, in order to create better conditions for a more collaborative planning process that fosters real inclusiveness at the same time as efficient progress takes place. Katja is a trained curator from Stockholm University, with a master’s in art.
“This is an urgent and unique, contextually rich project that uses a critical discursive approach to address the role language plays in producing political and public documents, and how that translates into design processes and built realities”.
The art of wood building and its place in a sustainable society
“Since 2012, I have been researching the future possibilities in wood building art with RISE / Division Built Environment /Building Technology/Wood building and housing / and the Nordic wood building industry. My point of departure is knowledge in wood construction, sustainable forestry and industrial processes within the wood industry in the Nordic countries, Russia, India and the alp region. On behalf of SFV, I am a house architect for the Ethnographic Museum and in this context I work for the World Culture Museum. I have assignments as a wooden building and heritage expert in various contexts and I hold lectures and debate on the subject.
Together with RISE, LTU and the Swedish wood industry, I am part of an ongoing multi-year research project “Facades of the city” with funding from Bioinnovationen/Vinnova/Formas/Swedish Energy Agency. The project is about product development of building systems and the art of wood building in wood-based materials and material research where the goal is to design, and through smart manufacturing, develop a sustainable building industry. Innovation and product development are combined with traditional wood craftmanship and industrial manufacturing, where focus is on design and architecture, quality, traceability and life cycle analysis. Design knowledge has proven to be an important engine in this process.”
“This is a fundamentally important project – for practice and sustainable living environments – with building in wood, thoroughly and at scale. It ties into one of the biggest opportunities we face in Sweden and further afield. It proposes a model of participatory knowledge production that suggests new directions for ArkDes’ role in contemporary debates”.
2020 ArkDes Fellowship jury
A jury chaired by Kieran Long will make the final decision on applications.
Liza Fior is a partner of muf architecture/art, a London-based practice working in the public realm (including museums) and design advisor to the Mayor of London . The practice brings unsolicited research into every project, working with those who know a place in order to articulate the value of the existing before moving onto discussions of the future. muf work primarily in East London, but not exclusively so. They are the only UK winners of the European Prize for Public Space (for Barking Town Square), and were the authors of the British Pavilion at the 2010 Venice Architecture Biennale. Liza has taught, lectured and been published internationally.
Maria Lind is a curator, writer and educator based in Stockholm and Berlin. She was the director of Stockholm’s Tensta konsthall 2011-18, the artistic director of the 11th Gwangju Biennale, the director of the graduate program, Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College (2008-2010) and director of Iaspis in Stockholm (2005-2007). From 2002-2004 she was the director of Kunstverein München and in 1998, co-curator of Europe’s itinerant biennial, Manifesta 2 in Luxembourg. In 2015 she curated Future Light for the first Vienna Biennial, and in 2019 she co-curated the Art Encounters Biennial in Timisoara. She has taught widely since the early 1990s, including as professor of artistic research at the Art Academy in Oslo 2015-18. Currently she is a lecturer at Konstfack’s CuratorLab. She has contributed widely to newspapers, magazines, catalogues and other publications. She is the 2009 recipient of the Walter Hopps Award for Curatorial Achievement. In 2010 Selected Maria Lind Writing was published by Sternberg Press, and Seven Years: The Rematerialization Art from 2011 to 2017appeared in the fall of 2019.
Åsa Dahlin Architect, PhD, is an urban strategist working in Uppsala municipality as a director of comprehensive planning. Her research background is from KTH and she has been a chair and juror for the government research council Formas, doctoral dissertations, lecturer and teacher. Collaboration between research and practice has characterized her career. During her work for national agencies she coordinated several governmental commissions in the field of urban development, architecture, cultural heritage, culture and social sustainability. Åsa has recently worked with urban planning in Stockholm City and as development leader in the Stockholm commission of social sustainability.
Dan Hill is Director of Strategic Design at Vinnova, the Swedish government’s innovation agency. A designer and urbanist, Dan’s previous leadership positions have produced innovative, influential projects and organisations, ranging across built environment (Arup, Future Cities Catapult), education and research (Fabrica), government and social innovation (SITRA), and media (BBC, Monocle), each one transformed positively via digital technology and a holistic approach to multidisciplinary design. Dan is a visiting professor at UCL Bartlett Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, an Adjunct Professor in Design at RMIT University, and one of the Mayor of London’s Design Advocates.
2018-2019 ArkDes Fellowship
The inaugural ArkDes Call for Fellows surrounding the theme, Projecting the Future, held between February and March 2018, attracted over 200 applications by practitioners, researchers, educators, artists and communicators. A total of three Fellows, selected by an international jury, joined ArkDes for a six month period between September 2018 and February 2019.
While each application addressed the theme, Projecting the Future, proposals covered a wide array of themes focused on future visions for tackling challenges in built and non-urban environments. An international jury comprising Behzad Khosravi Noori (Konstfack), Liza Fior (muf architecture and art), Maria Lind (formerly Tensta Konsthall) and Nikolaus Hirsch (e-flux architecture), and chaired by ArkDes Director Kieran Long, collectively assessed proposals during a seminar at ArkDes in April 2018.
Below is an outline of the three 2018-2019 ArkDes Fellows selected, their projects, and testimonies of their ArkDes Fellowship experience.
Projecting Futures for Exploited Environments: Staying with the Pit (of Malmberget, Sweden)
Karin Reisinger teaches at Vienna University of Technology (Institute of Art and Design) on Arts in Changing Environments and Intersectional Feminisms for Architecture. She previously undertook a postdoctoral fellowship in Critical Studies in Architecture at the KTH School of Architecture, Stockholm (2016-2017). During her KTH postdoc fellowship and time at ArkDes, she investigated the gendered ecologies of mining societies in regular exchange with the local community. Her Fellowship work is published in ‘Introduktion: En feministisk kartografi över ett växande hål’ in PLAN, Issue 6-7 (2018) and in the chapter ‘materialflöden’ in om inte vi gör det gör någon annan det (2019). Furthermore, Karin donated her work Lifelike Appendix to the Archive no. 1 to the ArkDes Collections to make it accessible.
“For me, the biggest treasure I am taking from the ArkDes Fellowship is that I was given the freedom to further develop my research practice methodologically, in dialogue with the archive and the research unit during many creative encounters. Thus, I could develop formats of (research) practice which are all about mining and yet counteract knowledge extractivism.” – Karin Reisinger
Al-Madhafah: The Living Room
Sandi Hilal, born in Bethlehem, Palestine, is based in Stockholm. Together with Alessandro Petti, Sandi has developed a research project based on artistic practice that is both theoretically ambitious and practically engaged in the struggle for justice and equality. In their practice, contemporary art exhibitions are concurrently a site of display, material production, research, and political imagination. The pair have participated in various international exhibitions, among them the Biennale di Venezia (2003-2008-2009-2013-2015), the Istanbul Design Biennial (2009), Home Works Beirut (2010), the Bienal de São Paulo (2014), the Asian Art Biennial (2015), the Marrakesh Biennial (2016) and Qalandia International (2016), alongside others.
“The Fellowship at ArkDes coincided with an intense moment of transition in my life and artistic practice. The Fellowship coincided with the move of my work and personal life to Sweden, leaving behind or bringing with me more than 15 years of practice in Palestine. The Fellowship also coincided with the initiation of the project the Living Room: the right to host in Sweden, both in Boden and in the Public Luxury exhibition at ArkDes. In such a moment of transition the Fellowship was fundamental in giving me some space and time to reflect upon my own practice. I lived the Fellowship as a moment of break, of silence, in the middle of a long messiness that was surrounding me. During the Fellowship I was part of the bigger ArkDes family and specifically had a great intellectual and friendship exchange with my other two Fellows. In addition to that I managed to put down a long proposal together with my Fellow Sara Brolund de Carvalho on how to imagine the continuation of the Living Room in Sweden. Moreover, I activated the Living Room in the Public Luxury exhibition at ArkDes. It has been nothing else but a great productive experience.” – Sandi Hilal
Sara Brolund de Carvalho/ Action Archive
Utopia in Action: Co-Housing in the Future?
Sara Brolund de Carvalho is an artist, filmmaker, architect and educator based in Stockholm. Since 2013 she has been leading the research group “Action Archive”, together with researchers from the KTH School of Architecture. They have developed participatory historical records through public actions that bring together diverse actors and a public around urban cultural, historical, and political issues by employing experimental research formats such as witness seminars, walks, films, re-enactments, and collective time-space mappings. She is currently a studio grant holder at Iaspis in Stockholm (October 2019-March 2020).
“The ArkDes Fellowship provided an invaluable infrastructure to my project. The Fellowship meant for me both time for longer reflection as well as the possibilities to come in contact with many interesting experts both at ArkDes and in the field at large. ArkDes also provided me the possibility to hold a public seminar about the Swedish group BiG (Bo i Gemenskap/”Living in Community”) which has been an important step in the development of my project. To have had Fellow colleagues to share ideas with on a daily basis was also inspiring and contributed to an overall fantastic experience at ArkDes.” – Sara Brolund de Carvalho