COOP ~ SOIL IS AN INSCRIBED BODY: on Agropoetics, Land Struggles and the Aesthetics of Sovereignty from Month to Month

Seminar 5: 13 - 16 June 2022 

Monday 13th June: COOP Transition

Evening get-together

Pick-up from last conversations at PAF

Conversation follow-up on tasks, and assignments allocated by the group to everyone.

Round-up discussion

Tuesday 14th June

10.30 - 11.30: Silent walk / Non-silent part  

11.40 - 12.00: Collective Nap

12.00 - 13.00: Sharing poetry - please select a text to read to the group

13.00 Lunch

14.00 - 18.00: Student-led mapping of the final project - please bring the material that you’ve been working on since our last session.

18.00 Listening session (Manuela Garcia Aldana)

19.00 Dinner

20.00 Listening session (Manuela Garcia Aldana)

Wednesday 15th June

10.00 Start of full-day workshop with Ghayath Almadhoun

The outcome must not be in writing.

13:00 Lunch

Ghayath Almadhoun

19:00 Dinner

Ghayath Almadhoun

Details about the workshop to be communicated once shared by the guest tutor

Thursday 16th June

10.00 Student-led Summit preparations

13.00 Lunch

14.00-17.00 Student-led Summit preparations (practicalities)

17.30 - 19.00 Reconvene with tutors

19.00 Dinner


(This is a preliminary plan, but we will notify you should anything be changed.)


Seminar 4: 3 - 6 May 2022

In our upcoming COOP session in PAF, we will continue diving into the subjects of soil and agropoetics through the refractive lens of water.

Together we will map out the connections between underwater worlds, birthrates on opposite sides of an ocean, extraterrestrial liquid water and the geographic location of 70% of the world's freshwater reserves. The connection between our bodies and the ripples that bind us. 

Please bring salt to our collective table. 

Tuesday 3rd May 

20:00 - 22:00 : tba

Wednesday 4th May

10.30 - 12.00: Silent walk / Non-silent part  

12.00 - 12.20: Collective Nap

12.20 - 13.00: Talk

13.00 Lunch

14:00 Picking up where we left off - Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

19:00 Dinner

20:00 - 21:00 Listening session in the chapel - Lamin Fofana / Darkwater

21:00 Recap of previous COOP’s planning for the final project (30’ with tutors / 30’ only COOP participants)

Thursday 5th May

10:00 Full day writing workshop with Billy and Sagal 

Travelling through sound into writing and back into sound

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Writing workshop continues 

16:00 Reworking material into a collective text

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Retracing writing into sound

Friday 6th May

10:00 Édouard Glissant & Manthia Diawara documentary alt. Student-led conversation about Summit

13:00 Lunch - reconvene at 16:00

16:00 Guest tutor session with Euridice Kala

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Student-led conversation about Summit alt. Édouard Glissant & Manthia Diawara documentary


Seminar 3: 28 - 31 March 2022

Monday 28 March

20:00 - 21:45 Check in meeting with Akinbode

Tuesday 29 March

10:00 DAI Introduction morning by Sara Benaglia

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Visit to ORTO BOTANICO

19:00 Dinner

20:30 Listening session: Lamin Fofana - Darkwater

Wednesday 30 March

10:00 Online session+discussion: Fertility, salinity and the many manifestations of Mami Wata

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Visit to the banks of San Pelegrino

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Salt work 

Thursday 31 March

10:00 Morning movement session – (please bring comfortable clothes)

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Reading Braiding Sweetgrass and Our History is Our Future 

16:00 Discussing the Summit + Self-organised work: continuation of the Nida project – on water

19:00 Dinner

20:00 Cinema and the sea – film screening

This is a preliminary plan, but we will notify you should anything be changed. 

Reading list:

  1. The Consolation of Water Lilies (p. 98-104) in Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer.
  2. Chapter 4. Flood - in Our History Is the Future Standing Rock versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance by Nick Estes.


Seminar 2: 23 - 28 February 2022



Location: Berlin

Host: SAVVY Contemporary, Reinickendorfer Str. 17, 13347 Berlin

Student Accommodation I/Class (6 persons): Architecture Apartment York. A, Yorckstraße 60, 10965 Berlin

Student Accommodation II (4 persons): Großbeerenstraße 68, Hinterhaus, Souterain, 10963 Berlin 

Accompanied by Peter Sattler (DAI, 2016)


This February COOP session of SOIL IS AN INSCRIBED BODY: on Agropoetics, Land Struggles and the Aesthetics of Sovereignty is going to focus on the practices of extraction, and…. how human manipulation in the name of capitalism, development or any other sugar-coated societal ill has led to consequential deterioration and precarity,  not just for the local communities - the immediate victims, - but for humanity and our ecosystem at large. 

Whether it’s kaolin clay extracted from the Ivoe Lake in southern Sweden, or Copper from the Katanga region in the DRC, our human material reality has irreversibly changed the natural landscape through the practices of extraction.  In every “act of removal”, emerges a void. In this void generated by human action, does the earth, and does nature remain inert? Paraphrasing writer and essayist Amitav Gosh the “world is often seen by its conquerors within the frame of world-as-resource, in which landscapes (or planets) come to be regarded as factories, and “Nature” is seen as subdued and cheap”. So how does nature, and ecosystems in general counter this idea of being subdued and cheap? 

If, as the Swedish curator and writer Sara Arrhenius writes “What we want to preserve more than unspoiled nature is the traces of human progress”, how far have we humans distanced ourselves from the exertion of force upon nature or any other form of life, and to which extent have we learnt from past misdeeds, and “progressed”? And how, in the name of progress, have we kept track of our collective motions towards developing a sustainable future?

These questions and a few other ones will constitute reflection axes around which we will gravitate throughout this upcoming DAI week

ROUGH DAY-TO-DAY (to be updated)

Wednesday 23rd  - SAVVY DAY

Introduction and visit of the SAVVY Space

Thursday 24th - Whole day programme with guest tutor around artistic practice

Friday 25th - Reading, discussion of extracts from selected texts

Saturday 26th - Whole day programme with guest tutor around artistic practice

Sunday 27th - Reading, discussion of extracts from selected texts

Monday 28th - SAVVY DAY

Teaching and exchange sessions in the SAVVY space


Seminar 1: 8 - 10 November 2021

The village of Nida, as a geographic space, bears a lot of marks of ebb and flow. In 1709 nearly all of the population in Nida died from a bubonic plague epidemic, and although one finds only very little documentation about this specific epidemic case, one can only imagine how the bodies were disposed of as was common during plague outbreaks - the ashes buried into the earth. Humans have flowed back to this area in several migrations since then and Nida has been a witness to land struggles and sovereignty up to recently in its history. A little bit more than a century ago, Nida together with half of the Curonian spit became after World War I part of Memelland under the 1919 Treaty of Versailles, but was subsequently illegally annexed by Lithuania in 1923. Renamed Nida, the village nevertheless remained a predominantly German settlement; the border with the remaining German (East Prussian) half of the spit lay only a few kilometres to the south, and in 1939, the village was subsequently annexed by Nazified Germany.

Hostipitality and agropoetics are inextricably intertwined. We envision this first week, the beginning of Soil is an inscribed body that takes place in Nida, as an act of “bridging” between last year’s SAVVY COOP research theme and the one we are about to embark upon. “Nida” - which means “fluent” from old Prussian language, but thus evokes the word “flow”, the act of flowing - how do we navigate in such a space, witness and subject to such violent actions and hostility? What are the signs and impacts (geo-trauma) left and carried by the space from such actions?

Our opportunities to familiarise ourselves with the entanglements that make up the fabric of our surroundings will include walks, conversations, and eating, but also collective listening to help facilitate and initiate a collective COOP dynamic, as we get to know each other better, map potential trajectories for our personal and collective practices, and also allow the space - Nida - flow and inspire as we bookend this year in the spirit of artistic collaboration.

A breakdown of the daily events will be provided upon your arrival as this week’s COOP is a participatory event that demands no off-site preparation. We look forward to meeting you in Nida for the first iteration of the DAI COOP Soil is an inscribed body.