English Information

urbanize! 2020 »Common Spaces, Hybrid Places«

urbanize! explores space as a common good and resource for art and culture, creative work, social innovation and democratic change.

The 11. urbanize! Int. Festival for Urban Exploration takes place under exceptional circumstances: Covid-19 has almost brought the democratic public sphere to a standstill and, despite many discourses on the net, it is becoming clear how much the social and informal component of human communication is missing in the digital world. The virus also highlights how precious (public) space is as a resource for our social coexistence and democracy - and also how unequally it is distributed.

As an urban society, we need adaptable and accessible, hybrid spaces that are large enough to permit a wide variety of functions. Spaces like the former Nordbahnhalle, which are missing to an alarming extent in the cultural metropolis of Vienna. But also public (green) spaces that offer quality of life and protection against climate change.

The urbanize! festival 2020 takes this need as a starting point to explore space as a resource for art, communities and social issues. With the festival theme »Common Spaces, Hybrid Places« urbanize! sets out to search for structures, concepts and qualities of spaces that allow unexpected encounters, experiments, social and political commitment and meaningful activity beyond wage labour. Spaces that challenge and enrich us through the encounter of diversity, that provoke and inspire us through artistic and creative impulses.

A veritable tool for the creation and preservation of such open and accessible spaces is provided by the concept of »urban commons«, enabled and operated by self-management and often through public-civic partnerships (PCP). More and more progressive city governments are using the framework of the commons to enter into public-interest oriented partnerships on an equal basis with their citizens. urbanize! asks for legal, economic and administrative conditions for the creation and preservation of common goods in public and built spaces. The festival explores local and international good practices and discusses existing experiences.

In cooperation with the Social Design Studio of the University of Applied Arts Vienna, the festival invites to numerous city explorations and artistic interventions in Floridsdorf and many other places in the city, in order to search - increasingly in public space - for common property potentials for and in Vienna. Join us!

Click here for the programme (mostly in german)

© Sarah Glück
© Sarah Glück

»urbanize! Int. Festival for Urban Explorations« has been organised by »dérive - Society for Critical Urban Research« in Vienna, Berlin (2018) and Hamburg (2016) since 2010. The independent society for critical urban research is also editor of the quarterly journal »dérive«, which has been published since 20 years. Furthermore dérive also produces the monthly podcast »Radio dérive«, which is dealing with questions of urbanity on different scales and is licensed as creative commons. derive.at