Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, in partnership with the Qatar-Brazil Year of Culture at Qatar Museums, will to host MFA Designer in Residence Felipe Fonseca for a lunchtime lecture on Wednesday 5 November 2014 at 12:15 pm at the Atrium at VCUQatar.
Open to the public, the lecture titled Gambiarra: Repair Culture, Brazil-based Felipe Fonseca will explore the popular practices of Gambiarra and Mutirão in Brazil, demonstrating how social creativity is latent in virtually every human activity. Through the lenses of Gambiarra, critical issues of the maker culture will be addressed – in particular the tension between fabricating new products and dealing with non-degradable objects that have been created over the last centuries. Brazilian initiatives such as the MetaReciclagem network, Gambiologia collective and others will offer concrete examples of the reuse and repurposing of discarded objects and serve as inspiration to further discuss open source methodologies, up cycling and how society relates to the waste it generates.
Fonseca is an activist and independent researcher in the fields of digital culture, free and open technologies, collaborative networks, participatory society and local development. Fonseca serves as a consultant to the Brazilian Ministry of Culture and the United Nations Development Program, advising on public policies for digital culture. He is one of the founders of the MetaReciclagem network (2002), a self-organised network that proposes the deconstruction of technology for social change. Fonseca worked in the conception and planning of the Brazilian Ministry of Culture’s Pontos de Cultura project (2003/2007), where he also coordinated the implementation of the digital culture strategy.
Fonseca currently lives in Ubatuba along the São Paulo coast. In 2008 he established Ubalab, an experimental lab focused on the crossroads of free/open technologies, environment and society. He teaches at Tancredo Neves Technical School and is the chairperson at Gaivota FM, a community radio station.
Fonseca will be in residence in the MFA in Design programme at VCUQatar from 2 to 13 November 2014, working with students on developing creative and artistic approaches to reduce and rationalize waste. During the residency, students will conduct field research, looking for manifestations of repair/up cycling/creative reuse in Qatar, and then articulate observations into concrete products.
VCUQatar is the Qatar campus of the prestigious Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia. Established in 1998 through a partnership with Qatar Foundation, VCUQatar offers students the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in fashion design, graphic design, interior design and painting and printmaking, a Bachelor of Arts degree in art history and a Master of Fine Arts degree in design.