ABOUT THE EVENT
Pillow Lava is a newly formed international educational exchange network that has emerged from the disciplines of design, fine arts and their indefinite ramifications. The network is to be inaugurated on the 21st of June this year in a 24-hour eruptive lecture and workshop time zone-based marathon, filled with questions and answers from people that are here, there and elsewhere.
Starting at 0:00 (UTC +12, New Zealand) invited participants will take turns in 15+ minute segments from 0:00 within their own time zone.
Pillow Lava travels: (start) UTC +12, UTC +11, UTC +10, UTC +9, UTC 8, UTC +7, UTC +6, UTC +5, UTC +4, UTC +3, UTC +2, UTC +1, UTC, UTC -1, UTC -2, UTC -3, UTC -4, UTC -5, UTC -6, UTC -7, UTC -8, UTC -9, UTC -10, UTC -11, UTC -12 (end).
Why are we here?
The idea arose during a late sentimental winter night in Stockholm, with a suggestion from a Swedish Design teacher to their French colleague to initiate a network for teachers to exchange online. This network would be free from bureaucracy, monetary exchange and fundamentally built on a simple barter trade principle.
The system of exchange can be viable since any participating teacher would already carry a salary from their respective institution, whilst online teaching does not imply any travel, administration, or accommodation costs. This kind of exchange would not only enable a more dynamic intuitive exchange, it would also increase the possibilities for unexpected impulses from unusual places whilst simultaneously freeing up budget resources for lecturers who do not necessarily have a steady position at an institution.
Pillow Lava the name comes from the magical encounter of magma and water. For Pillow lava the event we are casting magma as the network of participation and water as time — colliding them in the one event to pillow out into different parts of the world, creating bubbles of conversation and mystical exchanges.
What is this 24-hour event all about?
Pillow Lava, the event, is a prefiguration of Pillow Lava, the transversal educational program. The inaugural Summer Solstice event is an invitation to artists, authors, designers, students, teachers around the world to participate in a longer-term conversation and educational experiment that crosses all kinds of borders. The aim is — through various online and on-site activities including lectures, presentations, workshops, performances, readings and other forms of educational exchange — to sketch a collective playground for sharing that is free from bureaucracy — an education-and-fun-focused space for all.
Why is this happening during the Summer Solstice?
Solstices appear twice a year, in December and June, when the nights are the longest and the shortest. The Summer Solstice (which occurs in June), in particular has had a great importance over time for various civilizations and to this day is still expressed in the remains of ancient festivities like: Midsummer’s eve in Sweden, famous for its exercise of pagan dances; The Kronia festival in Greece, revelling in the Titan of Time, where the hierarchical structures in society temporarily dissolved; the birth of John the Baptist in Christianity, celebrated across the Christian world; the Mayan Solstice in Guatemala; a festival of the feminine “Yin” in China; the Kemetic solstice in Egypt, delighting in the coming of Sopdet (the star Sirius), et cetera. Moreover, the physical presence of a solstice also exists in some of the world’s most ancient building structures, such as the Mayan and Egyptian pyramids and Stonehenge in England, due to an intimate link between the marvel of the solstice and the timeline of construction.
How to participate?
Pillow Lava unfolds over two platforms: Laptops in Space and Zoom. The location of each presentation will be announced right before it takes place, and we will travel between the different venues throughout the day. So have both platforms ready at all times. Just make sure your audio is not on if you’re not presenting, so we don’t get any unwanted echoes!
For additional verbal communication you’re also welcome to converse through the chat environment on this website.
Laptops in Space is an online environment that is a bit like a mixture of video call and computer game in 3D developed by a three-person team from Bremen, Hamburg and Basel, Jan Pistor, Jonas Schell, Lukas Seiler. In Laptops in Space you are placed as a laptop avatar in a 3D universe. You can see the laptop’s keyboard cut in front of you, as if you were looking out into the world from the screen. This digital world is space in Laptops in Space. An abstract, almost completely black universe in which you can move around and look around as a laptop like in a computer game.
How much is it?
Want to do a presentation?
In order to participate as a speaker, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The email should include your bio, some samples of your work and a short abstract about your presentation.
Pillow Lava was initiated by teachers and students from art universities in Germany, France, The Netherlands, Estonia, U.K. and Switzerland. It is a free initiative, without any funding or support from the institutions. For the further development of the platform interface, however, we will be open for external funding.
It is open for participation from people across the globe, including teachers, students, researchers, practitioners, artists and everyone else who is interested. The team is in constant growth, but right now:
Åbäke is a graphic design collective working from Copenhagen, London and Stockholm. We exist since 2000.
Agnes Isabelle Veevo is a (future) graphic designer and illustrator based in Tallinn, Estonia.
Alejandro Bellón Ample is a graphic designer and developer, based between Berlin and Tallinn.
Alex Balgiu is an educator, designerwriter and bibliomaniac You can catch him reading, playing and disseminating in Lausanne (écal), Lyon (énsbal), Paris (doc) or the bookshop next door.
Brandon Fernandes is an aspiring creator, Dj/turntablist, visual artist and Design student at HfK Bremen. Currently sleeping in India.
Emma Singleton is a designer, writer and researcher based in London, UK.
Juliette Lépineau is a graphic designer, will graduate from Gerrit Rietveld Academie in July 2021. Based between Amsterdam and Paris.
Laura Pappa is a graphic designer and teacher at the Estonian Academy of the Arts and ArtEZ Hogeschool voor de Kunsten. From Tallinn, based in Amsterdam.
Moritz Schottmüller is a graphic designer concerned about translating.
Samuel Nyholm is an illustration professor at the HfK in Bremen and cartoonist under the alias SANY. From Harlösa, Scania and based in Stockholm, Sweden.
Pillow Lava is grateful for those – people, animals, spirits – that have helped Pillow Lava come to life.