Both the master programme and the bachelor programme of space&designstrategies are strongly project- and implementation-oriented. Every student joins in the work and research following the year’s specific thematic focus (which changes annually), sometimes working on a joint implementation project resulting from that motto. As a result, the programmes always involve students from different study levels.
During the winter semester, students are to engage in unrestricted research to derive ideas and concepts. The projects are monitored and tutored by Professor Ton Matton and his assistants in the context of the main artistic discipline. Studio visits and presentations take place every three weeks, either together with all students or as one-to-one talks. The work progress is thus constantly monitored, commented, discussed and reflected.
In addition, the annual thematic focus is accompanied throughout the year by thematically relevant courses, workshops, lectures and excursions in Austria and abroad.
Moreover, students in their first academic year for the bachelor programme may participate in training courses for metalworking and electrical engineering. The courses take place once a week at the Voestalpine training workshop and enable students to realise individual designs and projects within the possibilities of the workshop affiliated to space&designstrategies.
Out of the results developed during the first semester, individual themes and/or special outcomes are then identified in the second semester, dealt with in greater depth and possibly implemented individually or in the context of a joint project. The annual theme for 2014/2015 was “Cow/Gnu”. Under this motto, an almost abandoned village in Germany was revived for some time by the entire Department, resulting in the setting-up of a restaurant, in a TV broadcast and an exhibition. The project was concluded with a publication. In 2015/2016, the annual thematic focus was “NOT Welcome”, which triggered an exploration of the refugee issue. We cooked together with refugees in our HOT Welcome canteen and tried to physically upgrade the living environment of a refugee shelter. In Brazil, we explored the very welcome culture we challenge in our Western world. The results of this academic year were presented in an exhibition at the Linz OK Center for Contemporary Art. In 2016/2017, we were on the move as an “itinerant university”, visited several festivals and moved to the new Hauptplatz premises. Our current theme is “BayWatch”, with a focus on such issues as climate change and rising sea levels, specifically in the Ghanaian village Totope, which is being claimed by the sea. Visit our website to find out about our latest activities.
For the successful completion of the bachelor programme, students must submit, in the course of the 6th semester, all necessary mandatory certificates (see compulsory courses) and proof of participation in the excursion organised within the scope of the main discipline (certificate) and must have authored, in the 4th and 6th semesters, two artistic-scientific bachelor theses corresponding to the curriculum; all these must have demonstrably received positive grades.