Festive Fernandes

On September 4, the opening of my exhibition took place during Ruimtekoers festival. Together with all participants we opened a can of soft drink as a ritual and festive start. Fifty-five visuals on the wall of the shopping mall showed the proces of our artistic research with participatory actions we realized during half year fieldwork. Photo: Merit Pelgrom

Graphic Performance

Good vibes at HKU Media, Utrecht School of the Arts. Presentation of students Graphic Design showing the results of their Design Project. [project: Simone van Rookhuizen]

New Workspace!

From January 2020 I’ll be working at my new workspace, a beautiful houseboat on the central river of Amsterdam. Feel welcome …

Healing Rituals

October 2019 visiting-professor at School of Design, Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. 58 master & PhD students joined the course Design Anthropology with theoretical investigations and practice based experiments, inviting respondents doing co-research by using generative methods, designing healing rituals for relations.

IMC Weekendschool

Masterclass Design Anthropology: alumni of IMC Weekendschool Amsterdam South-East & West collected qualitative data by connecting strangers at art gallery Framer Framed using the method Cultural Probes.

Paper Offerings

Visiting Au Yeung in his tiny studio hidden in the neighborhood of Sham Shui Po, Kowloon. He’s one of Hong Kong’s paper masters creating art in paper offerings to the dead. Paper effigies are frequently used in Chinese funerals as ethnic Chinese believe the deceased still live but in another space. Chinese family members will often burn paper sculptures that imitate the appearance of real objects, believing these items will be sent to the afterlife for their ancestors to use.

Sensory mappings

Sensory mapping with students CAFA school of design at Botanical Gardens Beijing.

Central Academy of Fine Arts

From October 2019 I’ll give the course ‘Design Anthropology’ at Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing to explain the relation of anthropology and creative practices. My workshop synthesises social theory, action research and experimental methodologies to help PhD and master students develop innovative ways of collective creativity.

Werkplaats Molenwijk

From June till September 2019 together with filmmaker Magda Augusteijn we’ll do participatory research about daily rituals in collaboration with residents of Molenwijk, Amsterdam-Noord. The opening of the exhibition From Amulet to Artefact will take place on Friday September 13 in Framer Framed project space Werkplaats Molenwijk.

LOVA network

For years I did the lay-out of LOVA being a traditional ‘graphic designer’ of printed stuff. Lova is an active network that aims to promote gender studies and feminist anthropology and to communicate new theoretical insights to a broad audience both within and outside of academia. https://lova.network

Gifts of social structure

February 26th I’ll give a lecture at ArtEZ Studium Generale: ‘The gift as it occurs in cultures is fundamentally part of a highly ritualized cycle of giving, receiving and returning. These networks of exchange are driven by a principle that anthropologists have labelled with the term ‘reciprocity’: asking for a favour creates the expectation of a return favour’ (Mauss, 2000).


Reciprocity for 2019: red envelop with Desiderata of Max Ehrmann & drink voucher to exchange 囍 囍 囍

Exploring Fieldwork

At the practice Cultural Diversity WdKA students observe and experience societal issues through immersing oneself in the neighbourhood Bospolder Tussendijken. Questions of identity and authenticity, migration, citizenship, transnational relations and myths of progress are at the heart of this program. One core aspect is exploring reciprocity when working within a specific geographical space in the city of Rotterdam. (Photo: Lisbeth Luft)


Celebrating 10 years PhDArts: How do we establish, sustain and nourish a vital research culture in the arts? With Keynote lecture by dr. Henk Oosterling – Art based research as hypocritical reflaction.

A Tale of Seven Planets

Bruno Latour at Zuiderkerk Amsterdam November 16th “A Tale of Seven Planets – An Exercise in Gaiapolitics”: “We live for the first time in a time when the earth responds to our actions as Gaïa, in which nature is no longer the background but acts itself. We live for the first time in a time when the story of Noah is the expression of the real need that prevails at the moment. If we develop such a new sensitivity, a new policy is possible.”

Why the World Needs …

Fruitful conference ‘Designing the future’ by opening boundaries (transdisciplinary working), offering Kula (exchange information) and building potlatch (connect to gift giving) with Sarah Pink, Jamer Hunt, Anna Kirah a.o. at ‘Why The World Needs Anthropologists’ Lisbon #wwna2018

Merkez Camii Mosque

Visiting the beautiful Merkez Camii Mosque at Deventer. Every first Saturday of the month they open their doors for everybody who’s curious. You get a nice impression of all the activities.

Studium Generale ArtEZ

Together with art programmer Anne van der Weijden & performance artist Najendra Caldera we organised a masterclass about house rules, performing new rituals at home. (Re)designing a ritual which evolves new meanings in daily routines by giving them symbolic content and deliver a performing tool to inspire people in innovative ways of enacting at home.

Smart Culture Conference

Smart Culture Working Conference pays special attention to four PhD projects of the NWO programme ‘PhD Research in the Arts’. NWO established this programme in 2010, in collaboration with the Mondriaan Foundation. The programme aims to support research in the arts as part of university practice. With this exposium, delegates, the PhD candidates and PhD graduate artists, can explore what the art and science trajectory yields.

Bias in Design

September & November 2018 I was invited by department Creative Business at University of Applied Science Hogeschool Utrecht to give two guest lectures for 200 students about Design & Diversity.

Mission Casablanca

October 2018 on a mission with Dutch-Moroccan vascular surgeons for NGO Sante Pour Tous to share knowledge with team of doctors (in training) at hospital Chu Ibn Rochd in Casablanca.


At Balance-Unbalance, a conference about art and design as catalysts to explore intersections between nature, science, technology and society, I joined the workshop of Barbara Asselbergs, Generating Urban Values: dialogues in Urban Space.

Participatory Design

A central theme of Participatory Design is the direct involvement of people in the design of things, spaces and technologies they use. The Participatory Design Conference 2018 at the University of Hasselt was related to the challenge of approaching design processes and projects in participatory ways, with the people who have a stake in these processes and projects.

Building and Dwelling

According to sociologist Richard Sennett intergration is a bad idea. We do not have to think the same thing. If only we can work together.

Why Anthropology Matters

Tim Ingold’s manifesto for a future anthropology ‘Anthropology, why it matters’ is a book for the coming generation: ‘Anthropologists study with people, rather then making studies of them. Anthropologists have shown how principles of giving and receiving are the core of everyday life.’

Sante Pour Tous

As board member of NGO Santé Pour Tous I’ll accompany Marocain-Dutch medical team this year to Tanger, Nador & Casablanca. Together we’re working on a campaign to build awareness for www.santepourtous.nl

Contemporary Rituals

Inspired by social phenomena in public space WdKA students were challenged to develop a contemporary ritual evolving new meanings in daily routines. Forty students designed a performing tool with symbolic content and activated participants in innovative ways of cooperation.

Unmaking and ruination

Unmaking and ruination in design anthropology: can we speak of unmaking in form of design? Creative de(con)struction instead of production? Making colonial pain visible and tangible in ethnographic collections. Curating future looking into the (euro-centric) past. Inspiring papers presented at ‘Art, Materiality and Representation’ conference in British Museum.



What if the exchanges we call economic were part of a much larger, far older and more diffuse system of exchange? What if value were defined not by accumulation but by circulation, and circulation not by supply & demand but by honor, glory and beauty? Categories who are linked to gift and sacrifice. Students WdKA created social tools that gave direction to conversations by approaching unknown people.

Design + Anthropology

Design + Anthropology represents a milestone in the creation of a new and important field of artistic and intellectual inquiry. Christine Miller explores the evolution of two disciplines and touches on the invention & diffusion of new practices. Design Anthropology is an emerging transdiciplinary field characterized by an approach that integrates anthropological methods, theory, frameworks and critique with design principles and practices to address a wide range of complex system-level problems facing societies, institutions and organizations.

Moving Moengo

January 2018, together with filmmaker Magda Augusteijn, I’ll do research by mapping rituals as conversation pieces of different population groups [Maroon, Amerindian, Hindustanis, Creoles, Chinese, Javanese] living together in Moengo, Suriname. Art students of Nola Hatterman Art Academy in Paramaribo will create cultural probe toolkits for the inhabitants. The project Moving Moengo has been granted by Creative Industries Fund.

Local & global rituals

Workshop about rituals at AKV | St.Joost ‘Living with people who differ is the most urgent challenge facing civil society today. We tend socially to avoid engaging with people unlike ourselves, and modern politics encourages the politics of the tribe rather than of the city. Richard Sennett discusses in his book ‘Together: The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation’ why this has happened 

and what might be done about it.’

Lecture VU & ArtEZ

Tuesday November 21th two lectures take place: in the morning at ArtEZ Fine Art & Design Education Arnhem and afternoon at VU faculty Anthropology, Amsterdam. Both lectures I’ll introduce the connection between Design and Anthropology.

Minor Cultural Diversity

From October 2017 I’m lecturing Cultural Diversity / New Urban Dynamics for third year students minor Social Practices at Willem de Kooning Academy Rotterdam. The practices focus on art and design that impacts societal issues by (re)designing processes, interactions and relationships, involving participants in the design process.

Homo Ludens

On my way to give a lecture at PLAYSPACE about daily life observations for students WdKA Gamification. The location is in one of the inspiring streets of Rotterdam (West-Kruiskade) which reminds me of Constant’s quote: ‘Homo ludens impinges on his environment: He interrupts, changes, intensifies; he follows paths and in passing, leaves traces of his presence everywhere.’

Provocation Pieces

Together with Deanna Herst I gave a lecture about generative design research. During one day students New Frontiers of academy Willem de Kooning in Rotterdam build Provocation Pieces to provoke and trigger information of their community.

Moving Design

From september I’ll lecturing a new course called Moving Design – human matters in the world – at Graphic Design department ArtEZ University of the Arts Zwolle.

Art of Solidarity

Today we organized a workshop ‘Art of Solidarity’ in De Doelen Rotterdam where 100 Palestinian kids created new designs for a keffiya to dance and show solidarity with equal rights for all #MostWantedJustice

My Home Your Home

Op 16 maart 2017 vond de ArtEZ Studium Generale Lost in Transition – Identity in a changing world plaats. Samen met lector Jeroen van den Eijnde gaf ik de workshop My Home Your Home waar 1e en 2e jaars studenten door middel van cultural probes onderzoek deden naar elkaars identiteit https://www.artez.nl/agenda/lost-in-transition

Workshops Palestina

During our fieldtrip to research new ways to bring Palestine’s children’s rights to your attention, we found inspiration by all the positive and beautiful energy of 50 young people in Ramallah, Hebron and Nablus who joined our workshops. The workshops were initiated by Tadamun & DCI building awareness for children rights in Palestine.

Lecturing Design Research

Bck in Breda. My former art school St.Joost, in the South of te Netherlands, where I studied from 1991 till 1996. Assisting graphic design students with design research for their final projects.

stjoost01 stjoost02 stjoost03 stjoost04

ArtEZ Art Research Conference

Friday November 18th I gave a lecture at ArtEZ Art & Design Research conference about my research Design Education and the Role of Anthropology.


Bar Lonely

Invited by Call for Loneliness I’m doing research called Rituals for Loneliness by connecting people in different countries, different bars and different cultures. Looking for specific rituals people are creating to give meaning to their loneliness. Check for more inspiration: http://vooreenzaamheid.nl/


Guest lecture WdKA

September 2016 I gave a guest lecture about Rituals & Design Anthropology at Willem de Kooning minor Gamification WdKA, Rotterdam. We discussed the meaning of rituals in society from personal, local to global perspectives based on the three ‘R’s – Rituals, Relations and Restrictions – of Taiye Selasi.


Power & Care Dialogue

Power and Care was a 3 day Mind & Life Dialogue [September, 9, 10, 11th 2016] of leading experts with His Holiness the Dalai Lama at BOZAR Brussels. The Dialogue includes perspectives of psychology, ecology, ethology, anthropology, neuroscience, contemplative religious & spiritual traditions, economics, society, personal commitment and global responsibility. Theo Sowa: ‘bring care back into economics, we can have benefits of helping others’.

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Ritual money as Message

Lecture Summerschool

Last week I gave a lecture at the Ceuvel in Amsterdam-North about ‘Anthropology & the reconciliation role of Design’ at LOVA Summerschool of Experimental Education.

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Ethnographic Design Research

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2016/01/the-facebook-loving-farmers-of-myanmar/424812/?utm_source=nextdraft&utm_medium=email&imm_mid=0e0059&cmp=em-design-na-na-newsltr_20160209816bed2ef b6870d7015511e17d6