On 11 December 2020, the KABK Research Symposium hosted Fault Lines 2020, a critical celebration of research in progress by KABK tutors, including Hannes Bernard, Katrin Korfmann, Silvio Lorusso, Vibeke Mascini, Dirk-Jan Visser, Renske Maria van Dam, Sabin Garea, Shailoh Phillips, Laura van Santen and Marion Tränkle.

Researchers presented aspects of their projects and solicit feedback and input in interactive critique sessions. They each offered a guided tour of their studio or site of research practice. We visited workshops, Hack Labs, went for a walk in a Noordpolder landscape, delved deep into a digital database and explored the dimensionality of a Zoom virtual backdrop.

The environmental psychologist and spatial design researcher Adeola Enigbokan and software artist and writer Marloes de Valk joined us for the event.

In addition to the studio visits, you can browse the projects in progress of the KABK Research Group 2020 on the website, which has been specially created for us by Vera van de Seyp. Our website www.faultlines.online launched on 11 December.

Guest critics

Adeola Enigbokan is an environmental psychologist with a background in anthropology, sociology and art and architecture. She combines a deep knowledge of human behavior with a sense of how systems work and how creative change happens, from the individual to the societal level.

She is also active as a spatial design researcher, working on projects in urban design, public space, software development and user experience. She has led research and education portfolios in Urban Sociology at the University of Amsterdam and Architectural Design at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.

Marloes de Valk is a software artist and writer in the post-despair stage of coping with the threat of global warming and being spied on by the devices surrounding her. We are surprised by the obsessive dedication with which we, even post-Snowden, share intimate details about ourselves to an often undefined group of others. We're astounded by the deafening noise we generate while socializing with the technology around us. de Valk is looking to better understand why.

She is a PhD researcher at the Centre for the Study of the Networked Image at London South Bank University, in collaboration with The Photographer's Gallery, looking into the material and social impact of the networked image on the climate crisis, with special attention to the entanglements between greenwashing—the misdirection of attention and efforts in tackling the crisis—and the increasing energy and resource consumption associated with the circulation of networked images. Typical of those in the post-despair stage, she experiments with sustainable ways of publishing her findings.

Practical information


Friday 11 December 2020





Reserve your comfortable spot in the Zoom grid here!

Organised by


Explore projects on website/Interactive sessions Laura, Sabin, Shailoh, Renske, Marion.

Alice Twemlow was appointed Lector Design at the Royal Academy of Art (KABK) in The Hague in 2017. A design critic, curator and educator, Twemlow is particularly interested in design’s complex interrelations with time and the environment. Her current research focuses on the material manifestations and the meanings of design when it is disposed of and becomes trash.

Laura van Santen is a tutor in Interior Architecture & Furniture Design at the KABK and a member of the 2020 Teaching Tools Research Group. With her research project, ‘Fingerlings’, she wants her students to focus on what matter and materiality allow for both in the shaping and in the understanding of structures. Students are invited to engage in experimentation with microstructures by producing samples, documenting recipes, making triaxial tests and forming collections in a library. Specifically, she is creating an archive of finger exercises that help students to gain expertise in working with particular materials.

Sabin Garea is an instructor in the KABK Wood Workshop and a member of KABK Teaching Tools Research Group 2020. His project explores how to better connect haptic material knowledge and theoretical knowledge in the context of workshop education at KABK. Using an expanded conception of craftsmanship, which puts the emphasis not on the exquisite production values previously inherent in the word ‘craft’ but, rather, on the innovative attitude and openness to failure also implicit in this practice. He aims to assemble a library of exemplars and resources to encourage such an approach.

Small break.

Shailoh Phillips considers both teaching and working with ‘theory’ to be a material and social practice. Especially now, as so much education is moving online, she is interested in developing ways of learning together at a distance, while grappling with toxic, complex and abstract dynamics that operate beyond the scope and scale of direct human perception. As a peripatetic, working between disciplines, she is a tutor in KABK Masters Photography & Society and in the Masters of Industrial Design. In the KABK Teaching Tools Research Group 2020, Phillips explores the critical affordances and genealogies embedded in the tools of art and design making. Together with workshop instructors and teachers from different departments, she is collecting an expanding repertoire of collective practices and material experiments suitable for hybrid learning environments.

Marion Tränkle is a tutor in the KABK/KC Art Science interfaculty and a member of the 2020 Teaching Tools Research Group. Using a set of teaching situations where she deployed systems thinking and systems theory, her research explores the potential of a systems-based teaching tool to further collective thinking, moving and making in the specific conditions of COVID-19 social distancing regulations. Furthermore, Tränkle hopes to focus a systems lens on the ways in which we, as a complex learning and teaching system at the KABK, reflect and communicate our shared efforts.

Discussion between guest critic Adeola Enigbokan and researchers Laura van Santen, Sabin Garea, Shailoh Phillips, Renske van Dam and Marion Tränkle.

Lunch break/time to explore projects on website.

Short introduction to afternoon studio visits.

Dirk-Jan Visser is a tutor in the KABK Photography department and a member of the KABK Research Group 2020. By combining the practice of photography and the outcome of walking as a research method which, as anthropologist Anna Tsing argues, provides the tempo for noticing and thinking, Visser hopes to reveal the roles of different inhabitants, ranging from farmers to insects, in a landscape in the north of the Netherlands. Through his project, ‘Landscape in Conflict’, physical confrontation with the landscape and its stakeholders allows Visser to see and feel how the human and non-human aspects of the Anthropocene are connected and intertwined.

Katrin Korfmann teaches in the KABK Graphic Design department. As a member of the KABK Research Group 2020, her research project centres on the photographic image as waste. Through ‘Wastescapes’, she asks how visual, conceptual and technical aspects of her work as a photographer can be used to critically reflect on the Wasteocene. Her research takes her into the field, to visit numerous waste processing plants, but also deeper into her own practice and her studio, where she experiments with artistic methods to generate other forms of the photographic image, through the juxtaposition and entanglement of waste processing procedures and variants of image production, editing and manifestation.

Vibeke Mascini teaches sculpture in the KABK Fine Arts department and is a member of the KABK Research Group 2020. Through her research project, ‘Instar’, she seeks to consciously and sensually understand electricity as a statement of ecological interconnectedness. Specifically, Mascini is investigating the electric energy harnessed as a byproduct of destruction—of the fat of a stranded whale, confiscated cocaine and the hydraulic force of melting glacier water. The research is conducted alongside a reading of feminist theorist Karen Barad’s understanding of mattering — ‘simultaneously a matter of substance and significance’ — and with reference to theoretical and biological notions of (electric) entanglement as a situation of being intra-related.

Discussion between guest critics Adeola Enigbokan and Marloes de Valk and researchers Dirk-Jan Visser, Katrin Korfmann and Vibeke Mascini.

Small break/time to explore projects on website.

Vera van de Seyp is a design/creative coder with an interest in typography, languages and artificial intelligence. Currently based in Amsterdam, she works for clients as well as autonomously and is part of the Master’s program Media Technology at the Leiden University. In her work, she explores new technologies, digital tools and fields in media where boundaries are still blurry and yet to be defined.

Projects vary from playful websites to live data-scraping installations, from perpetually morphing typefaces to critical browser extensions, from national flag generators to a smart IOT generator that tweets about its own inventions, from a blank map to a poster-shaped set of rules.

Silvio Lorusso teaches creative coding in the Graphic Design department at KABK. Questioning the very notion of usership, his research project, as part of the KABK Research Group 2020, intersects multiple levels of user agency: from the minimal agency afforded by gestural interactivity (click, scroll, swipe), to the high-level agency which requires the invisibility of the system employed. Going beyond the reductive model of data production and exchange, ‘The User Condition’ is centred on the question: What are the online realities today of the user-as-labourer, the user-as-artisan and the user-as-politician?

Hannes Bernard is a tutor in the KABK Graphic Design department and a member of the KABK Research Group 2020. His research project ‘The Kindness of Strangers’ seeks to understand the new, emergent social practices of familiarity and estrangement facilitated by (and through) online platforms, services and interfaces. Using artistic research methods such as collecting and collaging social media artefacts into narrative arcs through multimedia installation, he is parsing the socio-economic dynamics of shared communication platforms (which increasingly serve as proxies for services once provided by the state) to uncover new modes of digital subjectivity.

Discussion between guest critic Marloes de Valk and researchers and researchers Silvio Lorusso and Hannes Bernard.

Closing discussion between guest critics, Dr Alice Twemlow and all researchers.