Civics, de novo.

Design Research, 2018


Inspired and led by Bruno Latour and Frédérique Ait Touati, this project was a collaboration with students and faculty at SPEAP—Sciences Po and The New School to formulate a political spectacle that resituates political activism and rethinks environmental discourse at Théâtre des Amandiers Nanterre, France between May 14-20, 2018.
        Participants of this workshop series were invited to experiment with what a constitution could be if we listened to non-human voices that are traditionally excluded from political processes, particularly those related to climate negotiations. 

Might perceiving geological, meteorological and nonhuman-biological signals shift our attention and “remake” our politics?

16.05—Workshop I

We the humans who occupy Denovo, in response to the ecological collapse wrought by our ancestors, inaugurate a new relationship between the different forms of existence on our planet.
        En réponse à la faillite écologique causée par nos ancêtres, nous, êtres humains et occupants de Denovo, inaugurons une nouvelle relation entre les différentes formes de vie présentes sur notre planète.

17.05—Workshop II

We do not presume to speak for the nonhuman biological, geological or meteorological existents with which we cohabitate.
        Nous ne prétendons pas parler au nom de tous les existants non-humains avec lesquels nous cohabitons, qu'ils soient biologiques, géologiques ou météorologiques.

20.05—Workshop III

Instead, we commit to new modes of attention and temporalities of action in the hope that doing so will produce different possibilities for living on this planet. We commit to vicennial conventions at which Denovo’s constitutional settlement will be renegotiated.
        Bien plus, nous souhaitons mettre en oeuvre nouveaux modes d’être-au-monde et de nouvelles temporalités d'action, dans l'espoir de créer sur cette planète d'autres modes de vie possibles. Nous nous engageons à participer aux conventions vicennales à l'occasion desquelles  seront renégociées. les fondations constitutionnelles de Denovo.

A documentary by Ali Fatehi Ghahfaroki


Civics, de novo is a project by Heather Anderson, Michael Dobson, Erica Kermani, Jonas Voigt, Leah Willemin, and Jacqueline Wu.

Special Thanks to Simon Kessler, Melanie Crean, and Jamer Hunt.

Entitled Civics, de novo; this experiment in politics by other means is a collaboration of The New School graduate students with backgrounds in Design, Performance, Social Research, and Technology with graduate students from the Experimental Program in the Political Arts (SPEAP) at SciencesPo.

Civics, de novo was made possible by the generous support of the Provost Office at the New School.