MA Experimental Design

In the fall semester of 2022, we’re starting a brand-new MA program in collaboration with our friends at HyperWerk!

Global logistics and pandemic statistics, democratic elections and resource extraction, gender norms and gig worker platforms—our world is organized by standards and processes that are designed, engineered, and often faulty. Technology is projected as an easy fix for today’s global challenges—but what if our established practices and operations are at the heart of the problems we’re facing? Join us and experimentally modify, hack, manipulate, recode or rewrite the processes that have come to determine how we live together. Whether you want to draw, code, build, or write—we emphasize the why, how and what: the process AND the product. Study with us if you are interested in developing and designing exemplary scenarios, speculative models, and radical proposals for societies and worlds in transition.

The MA program is organized around the two labs of the Institute of Experimental Design and Media Cultures (IXDM), Critical Media Lab & HyperWerk. It combines individual studio practice with a good dose of peer learning and collective, interdisciplinary project work. You will be able to choose your personal tutor from a pool of educators and researchers based at the Critical Media Lab and HyperWerk. Your personal tutors assist you in designing your individual curriculum of workshops, courses, and lectures organized by the labs and the PhD program MAKE/SENSE and support you in developing autonomous, research-driven design practices.

The Critical Media Lab assembles expertise in filmmaking, publishing, coding & physical computing, exhibition design, creative writing and media art. Our researchers and educators have backgrounds in design, the arts or disciplines such as media & cultural studies, sociology, architecture, (visual) anthropology and design studies. We are happy to help you design projects that touch upon digital cultures & online identities, ecology & food systems, climate politics & activism, new modes of work, commoning & feminist, anti-racist politics. Please take a look at our team page, the HyperWerk blog hypermagazine.ch, and the website of our PhD program MAKE/SENSE to get an overview of people you will have the chance to interact with. Find out more about our projects over here.

We welcome applicants with undergraduate degrees in design and the arts as well as graduates from other disciplines who are interested in applying their knowledge in practice-based design projects. Together, we want to critically think through response-able, equitable, sustainable, and care-ful practices that are based upon collective study and research.

You’ll find more details about the application process here, and more about the program here—please be in touch with Susanna Hertrich or Johannes Bruder if you want to learn more!