Playful and Poetic

Chaos: The origin, the germ of creation; a group of students, international, diverse, hybrid, the non-essentializing dialectic between East and West.Coincidence: Who could have guessed that a photo might capture, with the lightest touch, such unexpected light, such an original angle, such a brush of texture on texture?Crossroads: We wanted to go past dichotomies, to work from the center where selves cross and blur.Crystal: A filter can help us to see better, a creative response to a creative technology, a means drawn from a means which is actually meaningful.

Creative Responses to Technology 



How can technology’s focus on ideas with an application be reconsidered or even embraced, rather than rejected? Does a sense of play create possibility, a way to begin thinking? What kind of thinking are we talking about, and where could this thinking take place? What can creative responses to technology look like? Can our own experiences become an origin that allows us to perform philosophy? In other words, how is “doing” a form of “knowing”? We are interested in exploring how performative philosophy can treat being-in-the-world not as a timeless essence, but as a process of ongoing action, where epistemological models of technology serve as a starting point, yet take on new forms that we ourselves initiate to reconsider relationships with nature, sensory knowledge and senses of existence. A poetic approach verging on play might engage in telling experiences, finding examples, reflecting on concepts and expressions, acting out abstract ideas, incorporating non-Western traditions of philosophy, and considering the functional and the dysfunctional.

Our LEARN (Learning Environment and Research Nucleus) within the student project School of Commons embarked on a journey to explore these questions, working out poetic approaches to our technological age that are open to ludic reflection, captured in Polaroids. Let us have them “speak” for themselves.

Jessica Sequeira is completing a PhD at the Centre of Latin American Studies at the University of Cambridge; she is also a writer and translator. Her works include the novel “A Furious Oyster”(Dostoyevsky Wannabe), the collection of stories “Rhombus and Oval” (What Books) and the collection of essays “Other Paradises: Poetic Approaches to Thinking in a Technological Age” (Zero Books).

Jörg Sternagel ( has been a Postdoc Researcher at the Institute for Critical Theory at the Zurich University of the Arts since 2016. Since the winter semester 2018/2019, he has represented the Interim Professor at the University of Applied Sciences Europe, Campus Berlin. His work focuses on theories of alterity and the performative, imagery and mediality, and the philosophy of existence. His latest publications include the monograph “Pathos des Leibes. Phänomenologie ästhetischer Praxis” (Zürich/Berlin 2016) and the co-edited collection “Gegenstände unserer Kindheit. Denkerinnen und Denker über ihr liebstes Objekt” (Paderborn 2019).

Yris Apsit, Matthias Bernhardt, Joanne Ho, Shabnam Khan, Iswar Parida, Jayanti Sahoo, Andri Schatz, Simon Schwyzer
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