Designing Around the Kitchen Table

studio space production at the Floating University Berlin 2018

From May to September 2018 raumlaborberlin created a visionary inner city offshore laboratory for collective, experimental learning – the Floating University Berlin. Within this innovative campus the UdK studio spaceproduction looked into the space of the kitchen as an object of study and place of practice. The kitchen holds a very special place in our society. Its meaning in our everyday life spreads way beyond the limits of architecture. Looking into the typology of the kitchen involves reflecting about space, economy, gender, social agency as well as politics.

During the summer term 2018 the kitchen was not only a place of cooking but the core element shaping a social practice, it turned into a place to reflect while building sinks and wastewater infrastructures, a space to question the system behind the production of food, a situation to produce and share knowledge in public. In this context, every Wednesday the kitchen hosted a thematic dinner where participants were invited to share and co-produce a moment of hospitality. It became a place for conversations, lectures, discussions, common cookings, but also for analysing and drawing. We started a thematic survey into the surrounding urban areas through the lens of the kitchen to understand forms of living (and cooking) together and their spatial frameworks. We worked on a design for a better city from the kitchen table.

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