Residence for research and process nursery
IDENSITAT / Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona

//A project dealing with the lack of equality or equivalence in urban spaces in transition.

ASYMMETRIES | ESPAI E is a space for experimentation, learning, cultural research and cross-disciplinary work, applied to contexts in transition and defined by asymmetries, in which the forms of life, spaces or activities are the result of instability, transience or fragility, circumstances which at the same time demand projects which open up a means to change these situations.
ASYMMETRIES | ESPAI Eis founded upon applied research, and will attempt to generate projects based on methodologies combining the analysis of spaces (physical and social) with proposals which incorporate structures, components and various agents working to resolve them.
The general objective of ESPAI-E is to place creative practice within the framework of research and the redefinition of urban contexts, taken from a critical, counter-disciplinary perspective, and aimed at discovering, defining, or proposing concrete actions directed towards aspects affected by contemporary asymmetries. A space to apply research, to share methodologies, to deploy processes and to implement projects which may have an effect upon urban physical, social and / or cultural spaces. This will be accomplished by starting up a working group combining research, production and the socialisation of processes.

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ASYMMETRIES | ESPAI E is a nursery for processes open to spaces in transition, where different asymmetries take shape (economic, social, labour, relational, racial, sexual orientation, among others), in order to activate creative practices which impact imaginatively in social contexts.
With ESPAI E, we want to learn about, share and debate structures and projects which deal with «the city» as an articulator of dynamic spaces in constant tension and modification, and at the same time, as spaces where the collective imagination crystallises to make an impact upon urban transformation as a project. In this way, artistic practices and collective processes may activate strategies of unforeseen innovation which influence both the cultural ecosystem and the social contexts on which they act. The open call for research residencies, under the theme ASYMMETRIES, proposes to explore urban locations plagued by questions of inequality, lack of equivalence, vulnerability or imposed precariousness.

Residence for research and process seed-bed
ASYMMETRIES | ESPAI E operates several strands which will be activated in parallel, giving the project a more comprehensive shape:   - Investigation-action in residence. A working group, put together from a research residency organised by Idensitat and connected to Fabra i Coats, to construct a work process around the concept of Asymmetry, linked to spaces in a state of transition. The research in residence will incorporate the collaborative production of a project, with the involvement and support of different universities. - Process «seed-bed». The residence research group will be organised based upon an open call in order to find potential participants with proposals, ideas or research who may wish to contribute in shaping the framework proposed by Espai E. From this research-action group, a «seed-bed» for experimental processes and processes related to project development will be configured, which will meet on a weekly basis at the Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació,  and which will receive external advice from professionals from different disciplines, working at different universities.

- Formation. Training and seminar space. The residence research group will work during the months of March to September, combining theory and practice. It will meet weekly at Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació, and will receive specific training through intensive workshops, meetings and tutorials, with researchers and professionals in different fields. In some cases, these training spaces will  be open to students or invited guests of the lecturer who will be taking the seminar or workshop. There will be an exchange of knowledge between the research group and the invited group of students.

- Conferences and public presentations. Organisation of an international conference on the topic. An open space with external guests and projects, as well as with the involvement of the research group in residence.

- Intervention in context. Presentation of the research project carried out (or in process) by the selected group, produced in the context of the location which has been studied.

- Digital publication and exhibition. Compilation in digital format of experiences, articles and interconnected, involved or related projects. Exhibition of results generated in the process.
To realise this research residency and process «seed-bed», Espai E will commence three collaborations with the masters’ degree courses at three universities: the Màster Universitari de Recerca en Art i Disseny, Eina-Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona; Màster universitari en Antropologia Urbana, Migracions i Intervenció Social, Universitat Rovira i Virgili (Tarragona); PERMEA – Programa Experimental de Mediació i Educació a través de l’Art. Universitat de València and the Consorci de Museus de la Comunitat Valenciana.

In the training and seminar programm participatecompta (among other pending confirmation):
Teresa Marín (Universidad Miguel Hernández), Clara Boj (Universitat Politècnica de València), Nicolás Barbieri (UAB), Gerard Vilar(UAB), Elena Fraj (UB, UPF), Karo Moret (UPC), La PlasitaCameron TonkinwiseNúria SauraGapar Maza (URV), Tània Costa (EINA-UAB), Ramon Parramon (UB), Ángela Bonadies.


The work group of residence for research and process nursery is composed by:

Sonia G. Villar, Irene Pérez Martínez, Manuela Valtchanova, Mayra Sánchez Reséndiz, Amparo Prieto Monreal, Patricia Bagán Castilla, Fiona Capdevila, Nil Juan Villarejo, Duen Sacchi i Magda De Santo, Mia Coll Mariné, Irma Estrada, Maria García Pérez, Nicolás KORALSKY Vatiu , Francisco Navarrete Sitjà, Christina Schultz, Ro Caminal, Daniel Gasol, Carolina Olivares Amador, Irati Irulegui, Gaspar Maza, Tània Costa, Ramon Parramon.

Asimetries grup 01
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Asimetries grup 19



The sessions held weekly by the group of Asimetrías combines the presentation and dialogue with a person invited, and the research work from defined groups. The results of this process are made visible in two moments open to the public, in the months of June and October 2019.

March 12, 2019 Philosophy of precariousness. Aesthetics and politics of precariousness, Gerard Vilar (Catedrático de Estética y Teoría de las Artes del Departamento de Filosofía de la Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
Presentation by IDENSITAT


March 18, 2019 Derechos Culturales y Desigualdad en el contexto de Barcelona, Nicolàs Barbieri (UAB. Miembro del Grupo de investigación en Desigualtat. IGOP)
Presentaciones de proyectos de investigación propios de los miembros del grupo.



26.03.2019 Research projects presentation by the members of the work-group. From these, three lines of work are proposed to jointly articulate as a starting point:
Urban asymmetries: of specific places, of non-places, of neighborhoods, of the use of public space, of energy consumption...
Asymmetries related to issues of subjectivity and community: identity, gender, queer diaspora, loneliness, subalternity...
Asymmetries of work conditions: related to art and culture, with other forms of job insecurity...



02.04.2019 - Curas como respuesta a la precarización. Feminismos. Elena Fraj (UB).
Organización de los grupos de trabajo:
Asimetries urbanes / Asimetries relacionades amb temes més subjectius i de comunitat / Asimetries de les condicions del treball



08.04.2019 - Precariedad y ciudad. La Plasita.

La sesión tuvo dos partes, en la primera se presentaron los ámbitos en que La Plasita desarrolla sus proyectos, y cómo los gestionan en los habituales entornos de precariedad en que los llevan a cabo. Entienden la precariedad como una amenaza a la vez que un espacio de oportunidad. Sus ámbitos de trabajo se mueven entre la #arquitectura la #gastrosofia y el #emprendizaje. La segunda parte consistió en un taller que con el nombre "Comer ciudad" introducía en en el concepto de "gastrosofía", articulado desde la teoría de los cuidados y de la comida en comunidad. En él se generó una dinámica que inducía a reflexionar sobre la relación entre ciudad y alimentación, soberanía alimentaria y hábitos alimentarios. Los resultados planteados sobre barrios concretos de Barcelona, permitieron dibujar ideas y utopías en torno el comer y la ciudad. Un ejercicio para imaginar la precariedad como oportunidad.
Esta sesión se llevó a cabo en EINA, en el marco de la colaboración entre Asimetrías y el Máster Universitario en Arte y Diseño (EINA-UAB).






Precariousness means being subjected to a condition, or conditions, of vulnerability, fragility, deprivation or social inequality. According to Guy Standing, more than a quarter of the adult population form part of the precarious class, a new social class which has been steadily losing its workplace and social rights. For Remedios Zafra, precariousness is one of the most common forms adopted by the inequality of contemporary capitalism, and in a world characterized by connectivity, predominantly manifests itself in the sphere of work. Many of these forms of precariousness are linked to creative work. Precariousness is associated with disappointment. For Judith Butler, the term precariousness refers to a politically imposed condition, through which a condition of inequality is established in which some people more than others suffer the rupture of their social and economic relationships, being exposed to a variety of injuries and forms of violence. According to this author, one can imagine a social and political world which seeks to overcome precariousness, so that citizens may be more alive. For Gerard Vilar, precariousness is the contemporary condition par excellence, a process which converts the individual into a reified object, or reduces them to a marketable commodity, exposed to a condition of exploitation. For Josep Ramoneda, one of the main problems is social inequality, problems which are often projected, wrongly, upon migratory fluxes. The consequences of this endanger democracy through the emergence of the extreme right and clearly anti-democratic political positions which channel the discomfort and precariousness of the middle classes. For Nicolás Barbieri, inequalities are multidimensional and multifactorial, factors which may be summarised in three concepts, difference, resources and connection.

At Idensitat, we wish to explore different forms of contemporary precariousness in the urban context. Under the concept of Asymmetries, we propose a space for exploration, research and project advancement in relation to urban spaces that we consider to be in a state of transition. Being in transition is to be immersed in a process of transit that goes from one state to another. To be in transition is not the beginning of something new or the end of something obsolete: it is the uncoordinated condition that insinuates a change, a rupture, a transformation, an evolution, a dissolution, a construction; in the end, a different way to develop something formulated at a pre- or post- stage. Transition is the most creative phase that comes together in the evolutionary provisionality of a mutation.

Based on this premise, ESPAI E | ASIMETRIES brings into dialogue elements which contribute to the transformation of cities from various perspectives and positions, focusing on the contemporary transition which is taking place, from the production modes and from the active participation of citizens in the configuration of public space, and in contemporary urban construction. It proposes multiple perspectives upon the relationship between artistic space and social space, deployed in processes of transition. It is the space of difference, relationships and emergence that makes the city a place in permanent state of rolling turmoil, of construction and of creative destruction. This ESPAI E will also allow us to face the problem by generating conditions of creativity which increase the possibilities of interconnection between people or places stigmatised by conditions of precariousness. (Parramon,R., 2019)

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ESPAI E / ASSYMETRIES declares an open call for a research-action residency to form part of an applied research group, made up of creators and researchers in the field of art and culture, to deploy a process of creation and collaborative production in the context of Barcelona. The research group will be active for a period of six months between March and September 2019, and will aim to form part of a research residency and also of a "process seed-bed" to explore the concept of "Asymmetry", applied to urban spaces in Barcelona which are in a state of transition. The research group in residence will participate in the definition and collaborative production of a research, which may be formalised in different ways (publication, exhibition, public presentation). This working group will be supported by a training space and exchange meetings, activated by Idensitat in collaboration with Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació, with the involvement and support of participants from different disciplines and universities .
TARGET GROUP/S The call is aimed at artists, designers or researchers in the social sciences (e.g. sociology, anthropology, communication), interested in working on the proposed theme as part of the research group.

The research residency group will come together through an open call, gathering together applicants who may wish to contribute proposals, ideas or research in order to help shape the framework proposed by Espai E. From this research/action group, a «seed-bed» for experimental and processual projects will be assembled, which will meet weekly at the Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació, and which will receive external advice from professionals from different disciplines, working at different universities. Those who form part of the RESEARCH RESIDENCE  AND PROCESS «SEED-BED», will receive specific training through intensive workshops, meetings and tutorials, with researchers and professionals in different fields, and the follow-up and support of the Idensitat team. In some specific cases, these training spaces will be open to students or people invited by the lecturer taking the seminar or workshop; in this way a pooling of knowledge will take place between the research group and the invited lecturer’s students.

Different formats for public dissemination of research will be used, such as a publication, an exhibition, and/or an  intervention in public space, based on the proposal or proposals developed throughout the residency. There is also the opportunity to participate in the Espai E Conference, to be held in October in Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació in collaboration with EINA Centre Universitari de Disseny i Art de Barcelona attached to the Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona.

Proposals must be sent in digital format using the specific form, filling in each of the fields and attaching a single document in PDF format (maximum 8 Mb) which includes:

- Bases for research and / or a previous work with a maximum of 10 images, related to the proposal.
- Curriculum Vitae.
- A letter of motivation.
The call will be open until February 20th, 2019. The results of the call will be made public a few weeks later.


The sellection for the open call will be made by: Tània Costa (Lecturer at EINA, Centre Universitari de Disseny i Art affiliated to the UAB, coordinator of the Màster Universitari de Recerca en Art i Disseny at EINA and UAB, and part of the Grup de Recerca Disseny i Innovació Social, Art i disseny en/per a la transició); Clara Boj (artist and educator, member of the collective Lalalab, lecturer at the Universitat Politècnica de València and administrator of the PERMEA master’s degree course); Gaspar Maza (anthropologist, lecturer in Urban Anthropology at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona; Ramon Parramon (director  of Idensitat); Irati Irulegui (Curator and coordinator for Idensitat - projecte ESPAI E); and Roser Colomar (Degree in Visual Communication,  master’s degree in Cultural Management, and coordinator for Idensitat); and a representative from the Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació in Barcelona.


The working group will be active from March to September 2019, developing training meetings every month and performing a weekly follow-up. Spaces for the undertaking of project-related activities and the presentation of results will be made available at the Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona, Carrer Sant Adrià, 20.


All works carried out as part of ESPAI E | ASIMETRIES d’IDENSITAT for FABRA I COATS FÀBRICA DE CREACIÓ, will form part of the collective creation process proposed within the framework of the project, with recognition and credit going to all the people involved. IDENSITAT and FABRA I COATS FÀBRICA DE CREACIÓ may reproduce and disseminate through all analogue and/or digital publications all or part of the programme, always citing the respective authors and collaborating agents, and also reserve the right to archive all the documentation generated by the open call, in order to make it accessible to the public.

Background of ESPAI E
This articulation of relationships between the fields of educational and applied research began to take place at the international conference held in Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona as part of the NEXES project, combined DEBATES - PROJECTS - ROUND TABLES.
Under the title NEIGHBOURHOODS AND ARTISTIC PRACTICES, different experts on themes touching upon the relationships between artistic practices and social contexts were invited, upon which themes for discussion and projects to take place in various different locations were proposed. The activity, lasting two days, was open to the general public. It brought together people from different places and fields of study, both students and other communities interested in the connections between artistic practices, community actions and processes linked to context.

 ESPAI E | ASSYMETRIES is a project by IDensitat for Fabra i Coats Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona, to take place between 2018 i 2019.