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Open call for Visiting Researchers: Un-Writing Nature presented by Center for Arts, Design, and Social Research

Information session: August 13, 12–1pm
Application deadline: August 22
Residency dates: September 27–October 4

Un-Writing Nature II will take place from September 27 to October 4, 2022, and the Center for Arts, Design, and Social Research (CAD+SR) is happy to announce that applications are currently being accepted for Visiting Researchers. Writers, artists, activists, filmmakers, and researchers are encouraged to submit applications to CAD+SR if they are interested in redefining “nature,” including the interactions between humans and the planet more generally. Alternative ways of knowing and doing are necessary to resist colonial and extractivist practices. The community will spend one week un-writing “nature” using various cosmologies, approaches, and futures under the direction of famous authors and activists Dr. Stella Nyanzi and Jodi Rave Spotted Bear. The deadline to apply is August 22, with notifications of acceptance made on August 26. The residency is limited to 15 participants, all of whom will live, work, cook, and eat at the Villa Pianciani. Applicants are invited to join us for an information session about the program.

Un-Writing In order to continue a comparative discussion regarding communication and awareness systems, Nature II is meant to be a radically welcoming arena for reviving and connecting across various strata of matter and difference. This involves queries like: How can “nature” be understood and portrayed in the present? What media, languages, and codes enable us to renew and redefine our relationships with our bodies, the water, land, sky, and the other creatures we coexist with on the planet? What should be retained and forgotten?

Giuseppe Valadier created the gardens, parks, and farmlands of the Villa Pianciani in the late 18th century, and they serve as an exceptional research facility. Il laboratorio per l’arte planetarie (the Laboratory for Planetary Arts), a research centre being built by CAD+SR, will be located at the Villa Pianciani and elsewhere. The Laboratory will invite visiting researchers to collaborate on its future iterations.

Dr. Stella Nyanzi and Jodi Rave Spotted Bear will be joining us as Faculty Fellows for Un-Writing Nature II, and CAD+SR is thrilled about this. Stella Nyanzi is a distinguished medical anthropologist who focuses on human sexualities in Uganda and The Gambia as well as sexual rights and sexual and reproductive health. She describes herself as a radical queer feminist scholar, human rights advocate, social justice activist, poet, Facebook user, former candidate for Kampala Woman Member of Parliament (2020–21), former inmate of Luzira Women’s Maximum-Security Prison, and mother of three teenagers. She also belongs to the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), an opposition political party. Her first poetry anthology, No Roses From My Mouth: Poems From Prison, was written while imprisoned in Uganda before she was acquitted after 15 months. She is a 2022 recipient of the Writers-in-Exile Programme of the German PEN Center.

On the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in North Dakota, US, Jodi Rave Spotted Bear founded and serves as executive director of the nonprofit Indigenous Media Freedom Alliance. The company posts articles on, a digital news resource. For Lee Enterprises, she devoted the entirety of her journalistic career to a national news beat covering American Indian problems. She used her journalistic abilities at home, where she supports independent media and information freedom. Jodi has received a number of fellowships, including a John S. Knight Community Impact Fellowship at Stanford University for the academic years 2021–2022. She is a Bush Fellow at the moment.

CAD+SR is an independent, international non-profit arts-based research center. Our work opens onto multiple horizons of collaborative, transdisciplinary inquiry. Un-Writing Nature II builds on the Center’s ongoing research projects and communities, including: Un-Writing Nature (Kirinyaga District, Kenya); Cosmological Gardens, Encuentros I-IV (online and in Spoleto, Italy); De/Archive East Africa (Ongata Rongai, Kenya); Indigenous Planetary Ways of Knowing (Mérida, Mexico); Black Planetary Futures (online and in Johannesburg, South Africa & Dakar, Senegal); and Affecting Technologies (Helsinki, Finland & São Paulo, Brazil).

Villa Pianciani
Località Terraia, 44
06049 Spoleto
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