Can we write about our art (a paper, thesis, essay, etcetera), merging artistic insight and theoretical reference, in an imaginative way?


Maya Rasker, PhDArts candidate

For whom?

For 2nd, 3rd an 4th year BA students of the KABK and Leiden University and MA students of KABK.

The course will be in English.


12 Meetings on Wednesdays, Semester II 2023 (starts 8 March)

Study load

6 EC (60 contact hours and 108 self study hours)

About this course

Can we write about our art (a paper, thesis, essay, etcetera), merging artistic insight and theoretical reference, in an imaginative way? Can ‘fiction’ serve as a tool for formal inquiry? Can ‘theory’ be treated as a friend? The course On Fiction and Forensics raises questions about the conventions in critical writing and proposes new spaces to experiment with referencing, to the use of footnotes, and to the application of fictional elements. Thus it aims to broaden and brighten up the practice of writing artistic research.    

There are no admission requirements for this elective course.

For KABK students: Register in OSIRIS 18-25 January 2023.

For Leiden University students: register in uSis before January 18 2023.

Max. 12 students can be admitted for the course.

Full attendance is obligatory in order to receive study points towards the Individual Study Trajectory (IST).

For questions Emily Huurdeman, coordinator of the lectorate, at

Wednesdays starting 8 march: 9:30-15:30 room BB.112

The program will guide you towards the production of an end text – tailor-made type and size – that serves as, and results in a textual experiment in line with your current artistic research issues. If time / budget allows, we may consider a publication of some sort.

Competencies to be addressed

− Creative ability

− Capacity for critical reflection

− Capacity for growth and innovation

− Communicative ability

− Contextual awareness  

Assessment criteria

Presence: passive ---> active

Participation: negative ---> positive

Critical reflection: weak ---> strong

Conceptual research: shallow ---> thorough

Execution: simple ---> enriched

Presentation: anonymous ---> expressive

Paul Magee, ‘Alternative futures for the creative writing doctorate (by way of the past)’, in: TEXT: Journal of writing and writing courses Vol. 24, No. 1 (April 2020), pp. 1-21

- Anthony Grafton, The Footnote, a Curious History, Cambridge (US), 1997, pp. 1-33: Chapter 1: ‘Footnotes, The Origin of a Species’.

- Ursula LeGuin, 'The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction' (1988) in: Cheryll Glotfely and Harold Fromm (eds.), The Ecocriticism Reader: Landmarks in Literacy Ecology, Athens, GA: University of Georgia, Press, 1996, pp. 149-154.

- Jon K. Shaw and Theo Reeves-Evison, eds., Fiction as Method, Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2017: pp. 6-71 (Introduction).

- [more to come, e.g. Hélène Cixous, Margaret Atwood, Gertrude Stein]

No laptops allowed in the class room. Students should bring pens, pencils, and enough paper to enjoy a lot of hand writing in class.


Maya Rasker (1965, Málaga, Spain) made her entrance in the world of literature with her prize- winning debut Unknown Destination (2000). Her work is published in the Netherlands, the United States, Spain, Russia, Germany, Hungaria and Turkey. In 2012 she completed the research Master Artistic Research (Universiteit van Amsterdam). As lecturer at the Royal Academy of the Arts, The Hague and other MA and BA art institutes, she designs and teaches courses on writing and (artistic) research, and on the notion of 'the beginning' in art production and research. A PhD candidate at Leiden University, Academy of Creative and Performing Arts, she investigated the relation between creative writing and academic research by means of composing an “academic novel”.

This course is part of the Art Research Programme of the Lectorate Art Theory & Practice.

For questions about the courses in the Art Research Programme, please contact Emily Huurdeman, coordinator of the lectorate, at