OPEN CALL: BADS_Lab Fellowships

computational generated image of mushroom rhizome
April 10 2024 [extended to April 12 2024] | 23:59 | Watershed Art & Ecology, 1821 South Racine Avenue Chicago, IL, 60608

Open Call

From 10 May through 20 May 2024, the Fyrthyr Institute for Unsettling Technologies and its sister organization, the Center for Concrete & Abstract Machines (CCAM), will install a pop-up atelier-lab for fugitive planning and wake work at Watershed Art & Ecology and conduct participatory experiments in the Black Arts and Decolonial Sciences.

To this end, the Fyrthyr and CCAM will invite four artists/researchers to join us at Watershed as fellow residents, awarding each fellow resident a $300 honorarium for their participation, providing them with a supplementary materials budget of up to $200, and offering them space, time, community, and camaraderie to develop a practice in the Black Arts and Decolonial Sciences.

Please note that we are not able to provide travel and accommodation assistance for fellow residents, and that Chicago-based artists will receive priority during the review of applications.

Applications will be accepted through April 10, 2024.

Individuals chosen as fellow residents will be notified by April 17.

If you have any questions, please send an email to

Learn More & Apply at


Event Description


The “brute matter” and “brute facts” of Colonial Science are not givens: they are made by Colonial Science via processes of “brutalization”.

Colonizers submit beings to scientific study because they intend to brutalize them, to make efficient use of force as they transform beings into perversely pleasurable and profitable objects for collection and consumption.

It is only when beings resist brutalization in remarkable ways that Colonial Science calls in the specialists in complexity, chaos, and indeterminacy as reinforcements, for the purposes of risk management and damage control. Colonial Science then endeavors to marginalize those beings that are remarkable for resisting brutalization, writing them off as special cases, as cases for specialized know-how, and rendering them inaccessible to the multitudes.

BADS_lab (Black Arts and Decolonial Sciences) is an experimental gathering for artists, philosophers, scientists, technologists, and organic intellectuals who are intent upon (i) deconstructing the colonial practices of brutalization and specialization that have entrenched themselves in the modern techno-scientific imagination, and (ii) (re-)constructing “other-whys” that enable scientists and technologists to approach beings otherwise than brutalizing and specializing them. This specific iteration of the project will focus on liberating the phenomena of “time” from colonial practices of brutalization and specialization.

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