Laboratory

How might artistic and transformational aspirations and aims be aligned in practice?

The CreaTures Laboratory illustrates – in experimental and experiential ways – a variety of aspects related to the transformational potential of creative practice. Laboratory partners (artists, designers, cultural cooperatives, activists, art and design researchers) develop a series of experimental productions (ExPs), co-creative projects that share the common goal of supporting positive eco-social change.

Mobilising distinct forms of creative knowledge, the ExPs engage diverse publics and stakeholders in co-creative, sustainability-related experiences at selected locations across Europe and beyond. The ExPs are embedded in different communities and eco-social contexts and address a variety of eco-social themes, ranging from interspecies pluralism and social equality to transformative economies and sustainable businesses. They are characterised by distinct formats including gallery exhibitions, workshops, participatory games, performances and LARPs, courses, and a wide range of other events. 

The Laboratory collection includes 20 ExPs that were curated together in an open-ended manner, at different stages of the project: Some were invited at the project’s outset; other were commissioned later in response to the unfolding CreaTures research processes and newly identified themes. ​​This open-ended and relational approach to the Laboratory curation reflects the processual nature of many transformational creative practices, where it is often accepted that meanings emerge over time and initial standpoints are likely to change, rather than being fixed. This approach enables us to be reflective and flexible in responding to timely social and ecological issues and emerging concerns. 

Our main aim with the Laboratory is to experience and analyse how creative practitioners implement their transformational work on the ground, in their distinct situated contexts. The ExPs provide occasions for various publics and stakeholders to engage with a range of eco-social themes in co-creative, experimental and experiential ways. They produce rich data to distill key methodological lessons that are further studied by the CreaTures observatory and evaluation.

An overview of activities and events for each ExP is available in the ExPs Timeline.