MAPPING AND THE COMMONS – an unMonastery workshop

The City of Matera, recently nominated European Capital of Culture in 2019, developed a bid based on it’s capacity to be a “starting point of a grassroots movement for the renewal of Europe”: the European dimension of the cultural program is not based on productions imported from other countries, namely the centers of mainstream culture in Europe. The artistic projects delivered in 2019 will be the result of a progressive co-production process through which citizens place themselves in the creative process working with artists. In this framework, the unMonastery pilot project opened a residency space for innovators ready to work with the local community on set challenges, both sharing a do-it-yourself approach to problem solving. The unMonastery represents the characteristics of Matera’s bid to the European Capital of Culture title: a tentative to mitigate, if not replace, the necessary top-down approach such bids require, with a more horizontal, spontaneous and networked approach. In the context of the CommonsFest, unMonastery will present the “Mappingthecommons” initiative in Matera. This will be the starting point of a discussion enlarged to all people and organizations interested in mapping processes involving the locals. The workshop will be used as an opportunity to introduce the unMonastery BIOS toolkit. The BIOS – a basic input-output system and documentation of the story of unMonastery – is an open source toolkit for starting new unMonastery spaces and critically evaluating projects during their development. The unMonastery BIOS is currently in Beta development phase and includes works of historical fiction, manuals, a board game, and an online development protocol. Throughout the course of 2015, we will be workshopping the BIOS components, as a strategic tool for experimental development, with a variety of partners – leading up to their Alpha release in July at the NearNow Communities and Cities event in Nottingham, UK. Designed with a community of social innovation agencies and civic engagement initiatives in mind, the toolkit will advise best practice in community development and ensure documentation generated by unMonastery is valuable to others and contributes to a broader ecosystem of knowledge-sharing.

Organiser: Katalin Hausel