tiny perception

Tiny perceptions are the wave into the ocean and whatever comes next

Biotopological craftsmanship is a design philosophy and research area that explores, informs, and expresses interrelationships between social, environmental and technological bodies in movement by means of architectural interventions.

Renske Maria van Dam is an architect, artist and academic whose work exploits tiny perceptions to open-up alternative worlds of experience and action. She calls for a fundamental shift in the way we conceive and construct the built environment, from an architecture of objects to an architecture of reciprocity. With biotopological craftsmanship, a craftsmanship not of wood but of bio-topo-logical entrainment, she promotes a life-affirmative, animistic and empathic approach to architectural practice, research and pedagogy.​ 

The cross-pollination between Asian and Western practices, from architecture and philosophy to intuitive body-work, deeply shape her work and thinking. In her atelier, architecture is practiced as a transformative tool for figuring ourselves out and constructing ourselves differently. Slow projects run over multiple years and generate outcomes across diverse media and milieus. 

Renske Maria van Dam holds a PhD in Architecture (2021), conducted through the Radical Materiality Research Group at KU Leuven in Brussels and Ghent (BE). She is specialized in the correspondence and divergence between the Japanese spatiotemporal practice of ma and recent findings in the cognitive sciences that emphasize the centrality of the moving body for the experience of architectural space. She graduated (MSc 2013, BSc 2010) from the TU Delft Faculty of Architecture in the Netherlands, with additional studies in Asian conceptions of space-time (TU Delft Honors Program) and in the philosophy, sociology and anthropology of cities (Leiden University). 

Her work draws on her amateur background as theatrical performer, zookeeper, and yogi as much as she does on her professional engagement with architecture studio Herman Hertzberger in Amsterdam (2008-2009, NL) and Atelier Li Xiaodong in Beijing (2011, CN), and on her pedagogical involvement at the University of the Arts in The Hague (since 2013, NL). She developed her practice as artist and/or researcher in residence at diverse organization, among which Architectural Body Research Foundation (ABRF) in New York, United States (2018), Kansai University in Osaka, Japan (2018), and SenseLab: Laboratory for thought in motion / La Trobe University Art Gallery in Bendigo, Australia (2019). Her work is internationally supported, exhibited and published both in- and outside academia.

She has co-founded the pro-active design and discussion platform Vision Included (2009-2011) and the Autonomous Laboratory for Exploration of Progressive Heuristics ALEPH (2013-2016). Currently, she is affiliated with Slow Research Lab in Amsterdam (NL), active board member at TAAT (NL/BE), sounding board member at P/ARC (NL), and production editor at IDEA Journal (AUS/NZ).  

© 2021 Atelier Renske Maria | Architectenregister: 1.131201.026 | KVK: 82802696 | BTW-ID: NL003733024B68