raumlabor: Changing Tide or Business as Usual?

(Axel Timm)

Friday, March 10, 15:30 – 16:25


In times of increased borders, economic precarity and the erosion of the welfare state, how can Architecture and Design play a role in exposing these contradictions and somehow fix them?

Can Designers change the world or are we just subjected to the flow of economy and spectacle?

As society becomes ever more privatized and individually based, many practices across the world try to question this with more horizontal based structures and tactics. However, without enough critical mass or access to power structures, these efforts can sometimes seem futile and in worst case scenarios, counterproductive. The general critique around what can be called “folk politics” is that although well intended and democratically structured it only serves as a palliative to issues that the state or capitalism prefers not solve.

Short Bio

raumlaborberlin is a Berlin based network-collective of architects founded in 1999. raumlaborberlin works at the intersection of architecture, city planning, art and urban intervention. We address in our work city and urban renewal as a process. We are attracted to difficult urban locations. Places torn between different systems, time periods or planning ideologies, that can not adapt. Places that are abandoned, left over or in transition that contains some relevance for the processes of urban transformations.

Find out more about raumlaborberlin on raumlabor.net.

Axel Timm

Axel Timm is an architect, artist and activist. He started his professional practice together with Francesco Apuzzo in 2004. Since 2005 he is part of the collective raumlaborberlin.

From 2003-2005 he was chairmen of the board of Kunsfabrik am Flutgraben, a Berlin based artists association and from 2005-2007 CEO of Autotrans Ltd., an association for artistic production and research. From 2010- 2011 he was guest professor for design and scenography at the University of Applied Sciences in Dortmund.

Within raumlaborberlin he works at the intersection of architecture, city planning,

art and urban intervention. raumlabor addresses in its work city and urban renewal as a process. They are attracted to difficult urban locations. Places torn between different systems, time periods or planning ideologies that cannot adapt. Places that are abandoned, left over or in transition that contains some relevance for the processes of urban transformations.


Hand will only be washed by hand. If you want to take, give!


Space is a product of social interaction.


  • Home as a political space
  • The impact of “Folk Politics”