Education Program

8-29 October 2019

Course: Instituting Otherwise (BAK Public Studies)

A four-week course re-imagining (art) institutions within and in spite of the current political predicament

Jonas Staal and We Are Here, New World Academy #2: Collective Struggle of Refugees: Lost. In Between. Together, public forum, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, 1 December 2013, photo: Ernie Buts

Part of BAK Public Studies, the course Instituting Otherwise, which takes place at BAK, basis voor actuele kunst in Utrecht from 8–29 October 2019, focuses on the possibilities of the (art) institution within and in spite of the current political predicament. The course re-imagines the (art) institution through a notion of instituting that is an ongoing process of aesthetico-political practice driven by an active, reciprocal relationship with the publics. The (art) institution is envisioned as a site of interlocution between care and power that involves multi-directional learning, exchange, negotiation, and being together otherwise on the basis of shared urgencies and struggles.

Drawing from BAK’s renowned projects and publications, including Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–ongoing), Former West (2008–2016), Future Vocabularies (2013–2016), Future Publics (The Rest Can and Should Be Done by the People) (2015), and Becoming Oneself (2002), the following concepts are discussed: critique-as-proposition, from institutional to infrastructural critique, instituting vs. institutionalization, care and power, “future publics,” “assemblisms,” as well as solidarity and friendship, among others. The course includes the deep reading of essential writings on this subject, as well as the analysis of works by artists, theorists, and activists such as Athena Athanasiou, Matthijs de Bruijne, Forensic Architecture, Andrea Fraser, Stefano Harney, Jeanne van Heeswijk, Aernout Mik, Andrea Phillips, Gerald Raunig, Jonas Staal, Hito Steyerl, Marina Vishmidt, and others. The course is taught by Maria Hlavajova, BAK general and artistic director.

Participation in the course is open to all concerned with the question as to what art and its institutions can do in times like ours.

Practical information
Deadline for Applications: 2 October 2019
Deadline for Scholarship Applications: 29 September 2019
Dates: Tuesdays 8, 15, 22, and 29 October 2019
Time: 19–21 hrs
Venue: BAK, Pauwstraat 13a, Utrecht
Language: English
Fee: € 175 (individuals, incl. VAT) and € 300 (institutions, incl. VAT), to be paid before the start of the course. Participants are welcome to pay a larger fee in case they are willing and able to do so; BAK will match these additional funds and offer additional scholarships (fee waivers) to those unable to afford the course fee.
Scholarship: BAK offers two scholarship positions (fee waivers). Additional scholarship positions may be created as described above. Please indicate as such in your motivation letter in case you are applying for a scholarship. The deadline for applying for a scholarship is 29 September 2019.
Study material (reader): € 10

To apply, please send a brief motivation letter and biography (including address, postal code, and place of residence) to Steffie Maas: [email protected] before 2 October 2019 (deadline for scholarship applications: 29 September 2019).

Click here to view the terms and conditions.

BAK Public Studies
BAK Public Studies offer critical insights into theoretical foundations and concrete actualizations of art as public practice. Understanding art in relation to both theory and social action, BAK Public Studies form a space for collective thinking, imagining, and acting in parallel to BAK’s politically-driven and theoretically-informed research, discourse, exhibitions, and publications. The introductory course, Art and Politics, consists of six weekly sessions on how and where art meets the political at present. The introductory course takes a broad view on artistic production, institutions, and publics and attempts to build a critical vocabulary through which to reshape understanding and practice of art in the face of present global challenges. The subject-specific courses offer more concentrated learning trajectories so as to allow for an in-depth study of concrete problematics.

Still in 2019:

Art and Politics, introductory course:
Mondays 23 and 30 September; and 7, 14, 21, and 28 October 2019 (19–21 hrs)
Fee: € 250 (individuals, incl. VAT) and € 400 (institutions, incl. VAT)


BAK’s main partner in the field of education and research is HKU University of the Arts Utrecht.

BAK’s activities have been made possible by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science, and the City Council, Utrecht.



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Education Program

23 September–28 October 2019

Course: Art and Politics (BAK Public Studies)

From 23 September until 28 October 2019, BAK organizes the course “Art and Politics.” In six weekly sessions, the participants learn about how contemporary art relates to the political in an accessible way. The course is taught by Maria Hlavajova, BAK’s general and artistic director. Deadline for registrations: 17 September 2019.

Education Program

14 December 2018

Mapping Histories: Conversing on Visuality and Subalternity

workshop by Lisa Ito

On 14 December 2018 art historian and activist Lisa Ito gives a workshop “Mapping Histories: Conversing on Visuality and Subalternity” as part of the Royal Academy of Art Non Linear Narrative master’s program. The workshop is held at BAK in the framework of Propositions #7: Evidentiary Methods—the public program in the context of the exhibition Forensic Justice.