Design as a Tool for Resistance | Design als widerständiges Werkzeug

Anna Unterstab


Betreuer: Wigger Bierma / Ralf Bacher
Auflage: 300 Stk.
Material 445
edition HFBK 99 Materialverlag, HFBK Hamburg 2024


28 Seiten / 28 pages,
Gedruckt von / printed at: Newspaper Club, Glasgow, ineinandergelegte Seiten / interleaved pages

3,50 Euro


"When and how did you realise the major role that design plays in mechanisms of oppression? (...)  What harmful learnings from your art or design training still influence you today? How do you want to unlearn them?" 

There is a growing body of writing on intersectionality and design. This zine is an attempt to bridge the gap from theory to practice and is focussed on connecting everyday design practice with design theory, anti-racist and feminist sources. To connect theory with everyday experiences is just one thing that design can learn from Black feminism and the founders of the concept of intersectionality such as Kimberlé Crenshaw, Patricia Hill Collins, the Combahee River Collective and many others. In order to understand one’s own positionality as a designer and to critically question one’s own understanding of design, an intersectional understanding of power based on the theories of black feminism from the 1970s to 1990s is essential. 
The zine is aimed at those interested in learning more about the entanglement of intersectionality and design. The focus is on designers who are already aware that design creates inequalities and who are willing to take a critical look at their self-image as designers and their design practice. It refers to concepts and materials from intersectional, anti-racist and feminist theory and critical design theory. A series of self-inquiries provide an opportunity to become aware of one’s own positionality, which designers inevitably bring to design processes. 
Ongoing intersectional awareness-raising and the development of empathy allow for a critical look at the entanglement of design in processes of discrimination and open up perspectives on how design can be mobilised as a tool of resistance against oppression. The zine is not intended to be a to-do list, nor to turn intersectionality into a metaphor, but rather to offer suggestions for further research and to point in different directions to reflect on one’s own practice. At the same time it is a mistake-friendly learning space. 
Whether a design project is intentionally intersectional is not a question of aesthetics. The zine collects examples from resistant projects, the selection cuts across all disciplines, from fashion to graphic design and illustrates the multitude of approaches.
The main sources are transcripts of four interviews with the designers Hân Lê, Vivien Tauchmann, Anoushka Khandwala and Jacquie Shaw. In the interviews they describe how they implement intersectionality as a methodology and attitude in their design processes. The zine was reviewed and commented on by a group of peers, bringing a much more polyphonic perspective on the subject. 

Concept and Texts: Anna Unterstab • Interviews: Vivien Tauchmann, Jacquie Shaw, Anoushka Khandwala, Hân Lê • Peer Review: Kukasina Kubaha, Lea Kirstein, Irini Schwab, Ilo Elliott Toivio, Lisa-Marie Fechteler

Einzelpreis / Price per unit: 3,50 € | Preis für einen Satz von 10 Stück / Price for a set of 10 copies: 25,00 €
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