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Art & Politics - research theme

The arts emerge from enmeshed materialities. This occurs not only through making, showcasing, disseminating and distributing products, but because the arts are entangled in material processes. In this way their materialities are always social. Consequently, the arts – willingly as well as unwillingly – are in dialogue with larger societal, geopolitical, environmental conditions and challenges on global as well as a planetary scale. Artefacts and sites are designed things and processes, systems and infrastructures – matters of politics as well as political concepts.

The Art & Politics research theme focuses on the dynamics of power and change produced through co-mutual relations between arts/aesthetics and politics. Contexts of inquiry are public spaces and spheres, education practices, participation, mobility, citizenship, neo-colonialism, hegemony and social justice.

The Art & Politics research strand considers debates about:

  • migration
  • heritage
  • sustainability
  • carceral design
  • child culture design


Methods include:

  • counter-mapping
  • intersectionality
  • art-based learning and relational pedagogy.

Research projects

Reconciliatory Heritage: Reconstructing Heritage in a Time of Violence

Project with the overarching objective to investigate the possibilities that heritage may offer as a tool and meeting place for dialogue, mediation, reconciliation, and conflict resolution.

Part of URBSEC (Urban Safety and Societal Security Research Center). Gothenburg University in Collaboration with Karlstad University.

Funding: 2017-2020, Swedish Research Council.
Host: Department of Applied Information Technology, University of Gothenburg
Contact at HDK: Researcher Evren Uzer von Busch

Doctoral students' projects

Centres & networks

Centre on Global Migration

Centre on Global Migration aims to promote and support research and education in issues related to global migration and integration.
Centre on Global Migration
Contact person at HDK: Professor Erling Björgvinsson

Curating the City

HDK is active within the cluster Curating the City that addresses the existing city from perspectives that arise from the notion of curating / the curatorial. Our field of concern is situated at the crossroads of several overlapping research fields, such as architecture, conservation, craft, design, literature, history, cultural studies, planning and archaeology.
Information on Curating the City
Contact at HDK: Cluster leader, Dr Henric Benesch

Curating the City is part of the Center for Critical Heritage Studies. Critical Heritage Studies is a quite new and growing interdisciplinary research field that aims to problematize what cultural heritage is and how cultural heritage is perceived and used in different social arenas today.

Urban Safety and Societal Security Research Center (URBSEC)

The objective of the Urban Safety and Societal Security Research Center (URBSEC) is to produce knowledge that supports innovations and solutions which contribute to counter, reduce, and manage risks, threats, insecurities and vulnerabilities in ways that build a resilient socially inclusive society.
Information on URBSEC
Contact person at HDK: Researcher Evren Uzer von Busch

Top image: The Inauguration of the Office of Public Play, TRADERS training week on Play incGothenburg (SE), April 2015. Photo by Ylva Holmgren. The image is cropped.

Page Manager: Carina Krantz|Last update: 12/5/2018
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