School for MultiSpecies Knowledges

In 2021 Zone2Source is preparing the start of a multiple year School for Multispecies Knowledges we develop together with Irina Shapiro (Open Set foundation). In this project we explore together with participants and audiences new learning environments to rethink our relations to other organisms and its consequences on the way we live and work together. This will result in an exhibition Re:Tune and a series of workshops sessions and discussions.

The launch of the School for MultiSpecies Knowledges will take place during a 2-day event taking place on 27th of May, 2021 (day #1) including workshops by Sasa Spacal and day #2 on the 28th of June, 2021 with workshops by Špela Petrič and Debra Solomon.

Detail of a work by Spela Petric


More about the School for MultiSpecies Knowledges:

Our proposition to examine the means of tuning into multi-species rhythms and scales of a specific site is informed by Rhythmanalysis – sociologist and philosopher Henri Lefebvre’s concept of understanding social and urban happenings through interrelation of events, which has found various and critical reflections in cultural practices. One of the building blocks that remains pivotal comprehending rhythms is deep observation – an acquaintance or multi-sensorial engagement with the complexities of the environment. We propose to understand observation as a dialogue between ourselves, creatures and matters that requires reframing in order to be seen and recognised in all their interconnectedness.

Observation has a new significance in the Covid-19 presence, where the experience of being able to position ourselves, connect and relate to is challenged. It’s a paradoxical time. On the one hand, pandemic life acknowledges the strong interdependence between human and non-human rhythms. On the other hand, this multi-species interdependency proves to be always an act of risk-taking in genuinely engaging with others: it asks from us to make ourselves vulnerable to what is extremely other than us rather than closing ourselves off behind safe borders. This paradox urges us to extend our toolbox: we need to tell new stories, develop new languages and practices to be able to observe and experience ourselves as fully entangled in our environment.

The School for MultiSpecies Knowledges starts from asking the following questions:

Where does embodied/ multi-sensorial observation lead us? What kind of tactics can we develop for the experience of belonging and grasping our interdependencies in a specific context? What is the new meaning of a multi-species collaborative and inclusive practice emerging in the current circumstances? How can we relearn our daily living and working together through reflection on the pandemic experience?

The rhythms, conversations, collective gestures and contexts discovered during the event will continue in a series of meetings. The critical points of the sessions are to experiment with forms, mediums, protocols and lexicons working towards practices of inclusive multi-species communities building. Eventually, the sessions will create a base ground to build up further in the School for MultiSpecies Knowledges research programme with an annual plan from May until October starting in 2021.


Irina Shapiro’s practice merges design projects, learning contexts and educational programmes that explore situational, participatory and performative qualities of design and applied arts. She is a co-initiator of Open Set — an alternative platform for art/design research and development. Shapiro regularly teaches on experimental pedagogies, mapping multidisciplinary lexicons and practices, and collaborative design modes. Since 2016 she is involved in the Master of Education in Arts, Piet Zwart Institute as a core tutor.

Research Programs