After studying communication and cultural sciences at Zeppelin University, Eva Zepp completed her master's degree in "Theology, Imagination and the Arts" at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. In her master's thesis, she analysed biblical narratives of school art in Victorian England. Since 2015 she is a PhD student at Zeppelin University. In addition to her studies, she gained first professional experiences in the fields of art education and strategy consulting. From 2016-2017 she worked as a curatorial assistant at the Laboratory for Implicit and Artistic Knowledge at Zeppelin University, as well as a research assistant at the Chair of Art Theory and Curating. Since 2017 she has been working as a freelancer for FABRIC, a participatory planning process with artistic means. Foci of her research are participatory methods in architectural planning and design as well as visual methods in social and cultural research.
Participation in School Architecture: Aesthetics, Politics, Regimes of Display
Schools are increasingly perceived as institutions that are crucial to participation in social life. With increasing frequency, the image of "participatory" schools is being sought and the idea of participatory school design receives growing attention. Drawing on theory from cultural and visual studies as well as educational inequality research, my doctoral project seeks to examine to what extent the increased awareness of participatory processes in school architecture is shaped or even generated by visual staging strategies. Building on that I will further investigate how participation and appropriation of space in school buildings is being thought about. Which images and ideas of educational processes are created by school architectures? How have the concept of participation and the practices of implementing architecture changed over time? How are new, prominent school projects presented in architecture magazines, exhibitions, photographs and films? Finally, my research investigates how a critical understanding of participation can be developed that does not grasp participatory processes as a binary code of inclusion and exclusion, but rather as a complex act of social negotiation that also takes conflicting forces into account. In addition to an analysis of the discourse on participatory school architecture from 1970 to today, the topic will be examined on the basis of selected case studies on prominent projects of participatory school design.