How can one evolve a thinking and acting of the archipelago – that is to say a place permeated by relations, temporalities, islands and the movement of water – with open borders?

The ArchipelagoLab at the Institute of Philosophy and Art Theory aims at developing new alliances, affinities and relationships between different scientific, artistic and activist practices. It is a space that can and should be used for several reasons. In that respect reading circles, film screenings, workshops, performances, lectures, fellowships, working groups and artists in residence are some of the things happening in the lab-space. Overall the conceives of itself as an in-between space at the intersection of contexts, discourses and points of inquiry, that, like the cultural studies, move at the edges of existing orders or disciplines. In order to address the complexity of culture (in the broadest sense of the term), the Lab bases its practice on shared experiences and urgent concerns in our present time in their involution beyond already-known territories or points of view.

  • How can we understand for instance political discourses as aesthetic modes of expressions?
  • How can artistic practices make abstract states of affairs perceivable and transform them?
  • Which modes of knowledge arise in collective practices of experimentation?
  • What is the role of sensuous materials, environmental and media conditions in experience?

Starting from these and further questions, the Lab wants to open up spaces for new alliances in thought and action, across existing institutions, places and practices. The space is open to all who want to work beyond established forms of academic convention, over longer periods or temporarily in collaborative formations. The form of organization is collective, open and based on affinity and desire –
there is no membership. Everyone is welcome to pass by, get involved or just hang out.

In regular but not too frequent intervals, we send a newsletter with our program, news, and event announcements. Please send an e-mail to in terms of subscribing to the list.

Who is the Lab?

Launched in summer 2016, the lab has been initiated by Christoph Brunner and co-ordinated by him and Sophie Peterson. In summer 2019 a small collective came together to implement the desire for self-organized practices and a culture based on participation. Events in various formats, reading groups, screenings and workshops, but also many evenings with external guests aim to transgress the boundaries of conventional curricular and learning structures over the past three years. To invent and plan collectively and experimentally is our primary aim.

You want to join the Archipelagolab?

Great! Just send us an email to or drop in for any of ur events. For more information, you can also have a look around on our website or connect through facebook.

There are many ways to get involved in the Lab - either through collective planning, proposing singular events or launching projects.

We are happy to support you! You can send us your ideas and inquiries via our mail address, If you want to propose any of the metioned formats, please have a look at our guiding principles at the end of this section. After your inquiry we can discuss how the lab can and shall support you - wether it is just the use of the space itself that is needed or if there are any organizational requirements - there are many possibilities!

At the end of each semester we plan the events for the following semester. If at this time you already know you would like to do something, please get in touch. By planning ahead, we can usually ensure that your event can be financed adequately and that your desired date is still available. You will also receive support from our side to promote the event.

In case of short-term requests, at the beginning or during the semester, we can provide you with the room and support you in promoting the event. However, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to provide you with financial support for the event or include your event in the regular semester program.

You want to invite a person or a group for a lecture or a workshop.

If you know academics* or artists* you would like to hear, have seen or read some of their work and would like to learn more about it, you are welcome to invite these people or groups to join us. We recommend that you contact us as early as possible, as it is easier to plan the general theme  for the semester and the budget for the guests. If you contact us, we can discuss together to what extent the event can take place at the lab.

You have a specific topic, film(s) or book that you would like to explore collectively.

If a particular topic, film(s) or a book is of utter interest to you, then there is the possibility to create a reading group, a discussion format or a film series. You can either develop these yourself and then come to us with a concrete request, or we can develop something together based on your idea or interest.

You need a room for rehearsals or for writing practices.

There is also the possibility to use the room for other things than lectures, workshops or series. If you need a room for rehearsals, please let us know what you need and we will see how we can support you. If you need a room for collective writing processes, we will be happy to offer you the opportunity to sit in the lab at certain times. Writing workshops are also conceivable here.

It is important to note that the lab is not a cosy counterpart to the library or seminar rooms. Group meetings for presentations, regular essay writing or studying for exams should be held elsewhere if possible.


The events that take place in the space are subject to certain conditions. It is important to us to create a space that is as open as possible. This means that racism, sexism or any other forms of discrimination have no right or place at all. We also attach great importance to a friendly and generous way of dealing with each other and with our guests. Critical work is important to us, but we try to make it a productive, not negative and destructive process. All events in the Lab aim to combine ethical and aesthetic dimensions with current social issues.


Lab Plenum

An open format for joint reflection and planning. This is also the place to discuss proposals, formats and new ideas together. Everyone is welcome!

Study Night

Spend a long night of studying together! Study, a central concept in the book The Undercommons, designates less a learning from teachers but rather something common, which is immanent to thinking - not as common sense but perhaps more as common dissensus.

Hanging out with...

With this format we would like to suggest that instead of an additional workload with intensive preparation time, we would like to spend time together, take that time to engage in collective processes of exploration. The idea is that invited guests bring any kinds of materials with them, which we engage with and discuss together - or divert from them.

Documentation on Thursday

With "Documentation on Thursday" we would like to offer the possibility to show selected documentaries and films that we consider to be important for the theory and practice of Cultural Studies. You are welcome to add and enrich the selection with your suggestions. The aim is to explore the potential of documentation and film as important instances of reflection in cultural practices.



The Archipelago is an open and at the same time relational geography. It is a space with islands that shape its existence as much as the waters between them. An archipelago emerges from its relations, from its interstices, from the movement and emergence of new resonances. If we speak of the archipelago as an experimental zone, it is also accompanied by a poetics of temporality. How does the archipelago refuse definitions of origin and yet constantly produces new relations? How does it become a place that is at the same time always in the process of becoming? How are these relations that affect themselves producing an archipelago that is emergent and temporary but yet tangible?

Activist Sense

Against the resurgence of new grand narratives of crisis, depression, or the end of democracy. A general shift in perception towards the minoritarian, molecular, or minute. Opening up ways of "shaping time", repositioning oneself in the movement and producing dreamy forms of a future memory.

The perception of practices, of time and the immanent dreaming of other ways of living, form the starting point for an exploration of what we would like to call Activist Sense. With this term we link the questions of activity and action, immanent to activism, with the question of sense, in its double meaning, as the sensual and as the giving of meaning. The notion of Activist Sense brings together two central concerns that are curcial for the Archipelagolab's understanding of transversal practices: On the one hand, we address the question of sense and the sensual through a decidedly post- and decolonial and feminist perspective in conjunction with resistant epistemologies and ontologies that undermine the (grand) Western narrative of knowledge and experience. On the other hand, such a specific perspective cannot be separated from the legacy (and the hegemony) of Western theoretical discourses, which is why we want to deal simultaneously with modes of immanent critique. Such a critique moves below a classical canonical understanding of critique in cultural theory and occidental philosophy.

Upcoming events:

17.05., 18:15 // Transformative Justice 

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Universitätsallee 1, C5.225
21335 Lüneburg