The 26th Biennial of Design in Ljubljana, BIO 26| Common Knowledge, is taking on one of the greatest challenges of our time: information. From 14 November 2019 till 9 February 2020, BIO 26 invites you to dive into the global information crisis.
7 October 2019
BIO 26| Common Knowledge dives into global information crisis
How do we recognize 'fake news'? Which sources do we trust? How can we be sure of the information we use to build our knowledge? The 26th Biennial of Design in Ljubljana, BIO 26| Common Knowledge, is taking on one of the greatest challenges of our time: information. From 14 November 2019 till 9 February 2020, BIO 26| Common Knowledge invites you to dive into the global information crisis.

BIO 26| Common Knowledge
, curated by Austrian design curator and cultural producer Thomas Geisler together with assistant curator and journalist Aline Lara Rezende, focuses on interrelations between the multidimensional crisis in information and citizenship, and explores the role and potential of contemporary design in shaping of knowledge and truth. Discover six major commissioned projects, enjoy an impressive central exhibition at MAO and experience multiple side events, which are all trying to shine a light on the issues caused by the overload of information and different types of data.

Central exhibition, commissioned projects and much more

In an attempt to pin down the comprehensive theme, BIO 26| Common Knowledge adopted the data–information–knowledge–wisdom (DIKW) Knowledge Hierarchy diagram. The DIKW system will be used as a base to structure the central exhibition, commissions, catalogue and public programs at BIO 26| Common Knowledge. The central exhibition and accompanying catalogue, which will be released as a magazine of 5 issues, will be divided into five thematic chapters: the four components of the pyramid diagram -data, information, knowledge, and wisdom- and one introductory chapter dedicated solely to the 'information crisis' as a whole.

BIO 26| Common Knowledge is organised around a central exhibition of historic and contemporary projects that will be presented at MAO, the Museum of Architecture and Design in Ljubljana. At the central exhibition prominent works of Superflux, Carsten Nicolai, Dunne & Raby, Otto Neurath, Orson Welles, Viktor Papanek, Forensic Architecture, Otl Aicher, acclaimed infographist Jaime Serra, editorial designers Mark Porter Francesco Franchi and the intrinsic Institute of Patent Infringement project will be on show. The 26th Biennial of Design is proud to collaborate with international partners, such as ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, Germany and MU Eindhoven from The Netherlands. Both are showing exciting exhibitions on the framework of the biennial.

Besides the central exhibition, BIO 26| Common Knowledge presents six major commissioned experimental projects by multidisciplinary teams selected through a designathon process. For the commissioned projects BIO 26| Common Knowledge has partnered with six institutions central to knowledge production and dissemination, such as a museum, library, university and newspaper, but also a botanical garden and retirement home. The six winning teams have been guided by a professional and international team of Design Mentors, namely Commonplace, Paolo Patelli, Apolonija Šušteršič, Kathrina Dankl, Futurefarmers and Bureau d'études. The six Design Mentors will also present their own work(s) in the central exhibition at MAO.

Final project presentations of the winning teams of the commissioned projects during the show-off at MAO. Photo credits: Janez Klenovšek
Entering the final phase

This year, the curatorial team decided to use a different approach for the commissioned projects. Up until now, hackathon events are a known part of the design and innovation world, and for the first time this methodology was used to commission projects for a biennial/exhibition purpose. After an open call and two designathons (a hackathon with a design and curatorial twist) in May and July, the nominated teams of the 6 commissioned projects presented their final concepts two weeks ago during the show off at MAO.

During BIO 26| Common Knowledge, visitors will be amazed by the Serendipity Searcher, a visual atlas and a physical search engine that generates unexpected pathways to the treasured archive of the National and University Library of Slovenia. At the University of Ljubljana the nomadic classroom-kitchen, Course K, will be launched, serving an inter- and multidisciplinary curriculum in a social hub, striving for new learning ergonomics. Focusing on the data treasure of our senior citizens, the project Rethinking Retirement/Academy of Life opens up opportunities for intergenerational exchange and discovery of knowledge and life experiences of the elderly.

Submerging into the world of fake news, Delo Lab will be launched, an open collaborative research platform rebuilding collective memory. From fake news to experiencing data, the project Murmurmurs from the hi-hi-hills is trying to understand the reflected echoes from the forest by transforming the space of the Botanical Garden in Ljubljana by introducing interactive objects, sounds and words, which contributes to engaging with the environment sensory and emotionally on top of the hard data that it is described by. And lastly, in the spirit of modern dance, the "playable archive" installation Bodies of Knowledge at +MSUM breaks the internal logic of the archive by releasing the emancipatory power of movement. Visitors are invited to access and contribute to archive content through their gestures and movements.

All six commissioned projects are open to visitors from 14 November 2019 till 9 February 2020. The six institutions are all located in the city centre of Ljubljana as well as a BIO 26| Common Knowledge Info Point, amongst other things used for the biennial’s talks and workshops. For more information about BIO 26| Common Knowledge, please visit the official website of the biennial.

Practical information
BIO 26| Common Knowledge
November 14th 2019 – February 9th 2020

Official opening:
14 November 2019
Opening week: 14 - 16 November 2019

Location central exhibition
Grad Fužine

Rusjanov trg 7
SI-1000 Ljubljana

Opening hours and information about other locations will be added soon at
About BIO

BIO – The Biennial of Design in Ljubljana is organised by the Museum of Architecture and Design (MAO), and is an international platform for new approaches in design. BIO was founded in 1963, making it the first design biennial in Europe. Witnessing the many shifts and changes of the last 56 years, BIO has seen design transition from its birth at the crossroads of industrialization and modernism to a discipline that permeates all layers of life and human endeavour. Today, BIO is structured as a long-term collaborative process, where teams of designers and multidisciplinary agents develop alternatives to established systems.

Note to the editor (not for publication):

The curatorial team, Thomas Geisler and Aline Lara Rezende, is available for interviews. If you're interested in an interview with the curators, designers, director of MAO or if you're interested in more information about BIO 26 | Common Knowledge, please don't hesitate to contact us:

International Press Office - BIO 26| Common Knowledge
Carlijn Bosch | | t: +31 30 2716311 | m: +31 6 48517367

PR Department - BIO 26| Common Knowledge
Alenka Klun | | t: + 386 (0)1 548 42 74 | m: + 386 (0)41 606 436

Feel free to share this press release with others. High-res images and more information can be found on our press page. If you're looking for specific information or images, you can find direct links below:

⁣⁣#BIO26 #BIO26CommonKnowledge
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