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16 March 2024, 3–5 PM
Urgent Pedagogies: Alternative spaces for learning

Welcome to a series of presentations and conversations with a focus on alternative environments for learning and knowledge production in relation to how socially engaged spatial practice may act in response to the urgencies of social justice and equality, contested territories, and conditions of conflict.

In this event, organised in relation to the exhibition Architectural Education in Turkey: Thresholds of Institutionalization from the 18th Century to the Present at SALT, the Urgent Pedagogies project and platform will be presented alongside examples of historical and current practice. This includes the Swedish People’s House movement and other historical urban commons from the 20th century, the research collective Arazi Assembly and their practice at different spatial scales, focusing on the southeast region of Turkey.

With: Magnus Ericson, Merve Gül Özokcu and Elof Hellström, introduction and moderation by Eylül Şenses.


Curator and co-founder of the project Magnus Ericson will present the IASPIS project Urgent Pedagogies that started as a series of public discursive events and then developed to serve as a space and a common resource, bringing together practitioners, researchers and thinkers from a plurality of contexts, experiences, and backgrounds to be in dialogue, think together and create alliances.

Architect, researcher, and activist Merve Gül Özokcu will introduce the research collective Arazi Assembly and their practice at different spatial scales, focusing on the southeast region of Turkey. Aiming to understand and develop uncommon methodologies of architecture, urbanism, and territorial research, Arazi foregrounds collective research as a form of knowledge production on decolonization, care, and solidarity.

Artist and researcher Elof Hellström will introduce the People’s House movement and other historical urban commons from the 20th century. These examples will be discussed as infrastructures for cultural production and democratization of urban and rural fabrics, but also as sites for popular education and collective knowledge production. During his presentation, he will inquire, “What could we learn from these spatial, social, and pedagogical attempts today?”

The event is presented as a collaboration between SALT, IASPIS and the Consulate General of Sweden in Istanbul.

Magnus Ericson

is a curator and educator working across design, architecture, urbanism, and art. He is currently Head if Applies Arts, IASPIS, leading the program related to design, crafts, architecture, spatial and urban practice. He has between 2014 and 2018 developed and led a number of postgraduate courses on socially engaged critical practice at Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm. Between 2009 and 2014, he was a Senior Advisor/Curator for the design related program at Arkdes, Sweden’s National Center for Architecture and Design, in Stockholm. Magnus Ericson has been curating the IASPIS project Urgent Pedagogies together with Pelin Tan.

Merve Gül Özokcu

is an architect, researcher, and activist. Her research focuses on commons, creative actions, narratives of everyday life, and indigenous eco-feminist practices. She is a PhD candidate in Architectural Design at the Istanbul Technical University and a member of Herkes İçin Mimarlık Derneği (Architecture for All Association), which aims to resolve social problems through architecture and develop alternative ways of practicing the discipline. She has been an artist in residence at IASPIS and was a grantee of the Istanbul Design Biennial’s “Designing Resilience” program.

Elof Hellström

is the artistic director at Hägerstensåsens medborgarhus and senior lecturer at the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm, where he runs the research-based course “Tusen Kulturhus.” Between 2007-2022, he took part in building up the cultural house Cyklopen in Stockholm. In his artistic practice, writings, and research, he explores urban transformation, spatial justice, and the relationship between cultural production and space, often through collaborative and collective practice. He is the co-founder and member of the artistic research collectives Mapping the Unjust City and SIFAV, and the editor of the independent newspaper Stockholmstidningen.

Eylül Şenses

is a curator and programmer at Salt Research and Programs. She graduated from the Architecture Department of Middle East Technical University (METU), and received a master’s degree from the Architecture and Urban Studies program, Kadir Has University (KHAS). She was part of The Young Curators Group established within the 5th Istanbul Design Biennial Biennial. She is one of the founding members of the Urban Studies Cooperative (Urban.koop), a collective network of urbanists, artists, and creatives who are willing to co-develop urban policies, programs, and projects for the local communities.

Magnus Ericson
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