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Bristol Biennial, In Other Worlds

Bristol, UK

2 - 10 Sept 2016 

Intervention, workshop and presentation

Marieke Warmelink & Jasmin Moeller


DIY-City operates as a new civil service in the municipality of Bristol. Tackling Bristol’s underlying

stories, artists Jasmin Moeller and Marieke Warmelink play the role of city- consultants. Through a

series of performative interventions Moeller and Warmelink offer the city and its citizens a

cooperative platform to investigate, propose and work with alternative ways of decision-making.

Vision of DIY-City

DIY-City CITY aims to reconnect the experience of the individual with the complex organism of the

city and its managing board whilst challenging various working methods.

DIY-City aims to

• give a Voice to the Unheard

• give a Face to the invisible

• reconnect individual with complex organ of city

• using Playfulness & non-rational thinking

DIY-City uses a cross-disciplinary approach to review and reconnect the city with its inhabitants.

The project combines regular research methods with creative and playful methodologies. Doing

so, underlying problems of a city can be faced, seen from a different perspective and innovative

solutions can be found.

DIY-City dares to ask unexpected questions and therefore receives unexpected answers.

Context DIY-City

DIY-City is a collaborative project developed to empower Bristol citizens from within. DIY-City is a

project initially designed in commission for the Festival of Ideas; Bristol Biennial, In Other Worlds,

2016. Based on the positive feedback of the project, the intense collaboration with the residents

and the network that has been created in Bristol, the need to continue in Bristol has been

expressed by different parties.

General Context DIY-City

There have been strong signs for the need of political discussion in our everyday roles, for

communal action in the streets and behind closed doors. Public opinion needs to be fed back to

our political institutions and representatives in a positive, affirming way.


The project aims to investigate the possibilities of re-designing a city's process of decision

making with and by its inhabitants, which, doing so, reflects the time and society people live in

today. It is an approach that actively involves the audience, questions convictions and challenges

inhabitants to take a political position.

The project aims to deliver unexpected outcomes by bringing together art, alongside scientific

approaches to create alternative methods and ideas that can be of value for councils, science and


DIY-City has become ever more necessary and significant a work to bring into the city. It brings

hope of international exchange , political and humorous conversation , diversity in togetherness,

and empowerment to the people .

The goal of the DIY-City manifestations is to provide a platform to enhance the level of

connectivity , to create space for new thoughts and experiment. The power of self- initiation is

one of the leading strategies.

Target Audience

All persons involved in organizing a city including institutes, residents and city council.

Working Method DIY City

The working method is split up in four phases;

1. Research

2. Public workshops using systemic constellation techniques

3. Final presentation

4. Follow up

Phase 1: Research

● Online and ground research to gather information and first impressions of communication

between City Council and citizens of Bristol.

● Performative public consultation in the form of a survey; an inquiry for all wishes, needs

and complaints of citizens, taking place in one or more different areas of the city.

Fri 2 Sept       6-8pm: The Bearpit

Sat 3 Sept     1-3pm:  St Nicholas Market

Sun 4 Sept    12-2pm: Bedminster Tabacco Factory

Phase 2: Workshop: Re-designing the City

For the public workshop the inhabitants and diverse parties in a specific living area are invited.

The session is delivered by the DIY consultants in collaboration with a systematic therapy specialist.

Systemic constellation is a method which uses personal input, play and ideas of participants. It

helps to visualize and surface an underlying problem within one or more communities. A specific

topic or underlying problem is acted out using simple body movements, gestures and words. In

this way, the subconscious levels are addressed rather than merely the rational. The hidden core

of perpetuating problems can be addressed which opens up the path of potential change.

Participants can make their voice heard (participate) or contribute by simply observing (audience)

what takes place during the event.

The strength of this working method lies in the fact that all participants including the audience

play a vital role in re-designing the city; the working process is a shared action leading a

communal solution. Another strength lies in the interaction between participants which creates

understanding and a feeling of togetherness.

The private and intimate setting creates an atmosphere where people feel listened to, taken

serious and understood. As a result participants feel empowered, part of the problem as well as

the solution. This is what we call leadership from within.

Wed 7 Sep, 6:30-9pm:

Colston Hall, 3rd Floor

Phase 3: Final presentation

The outcome of research and workshop is presented by the participants of the workshop

supported by DIY-City consultants for the general public/inhabitants of the specific area in the

form of a public presentation. DIY-City Consultants support the participants with evaluation and

presentation techniques to make their voice heard. The presentation is accompanied by an official

advisory report for the City Council. The report is a collection of data and at the same time an

evaluation of information, responses and critical reviews which have been gathered during the

DIY-City work process.

Fri 9 Sep, 7-8pm 

St Werburgh's Community Centre

Supported by
Bristol City Council
Colston Hall
The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Contact us for for more information or order the most recent advisory report of DIY- City in Bristol

2016 “ Bristol's biggest problems and how to solve them; A different perspective towards



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