We cannot survive and thrive without immediate change toward an anti-racist model of design education and practice. Existing systems have not been able to transform away from centering and advancing whiteness, through their reliance on an implied dominant and racialized subject and audience. The impacts of that centering are widespread and can be felt in the inequities that global extraction, racial capitalism, and colonialism have created. The earth and the majority of its people have suffered tremendous harm as a result. Collective liberation cannot only occur within the confines of individual institutions—Dark Matter University is founded to work inside and outside of existing systems to challenge, inform, and reshape our present world toward a better future.
Dark Matter University is a democratic network
with the following principles guiding its actions.
We work to create:
NEW FORMS OF KNOWLEDGE AND KNOWLEDGE PRODUCTION
through radical anti-racist forms of communal knowledge and spatial practice that are grounded in lived experience. We challenge hegemonic pedagogies, canons, and epistemologies drawn from paradigms of white domination while elevating ancestral and local knowledge.
NEW FORMS OF INSTITUTIONS
along a networked resource distribution model between institutions. We extract from those who have extracted to collate resources and lift up marginalized voices.
NEW FORMS OF COLLECTIVITY AND PRACTICE
that democratize models of practice, education, and labor at all phases of production. We operate with deep consideration of ethics and a duty of care, moving from hard to soft power.
NEW FORMS OF COMMUNITY AND CULTURE
that expand the circle of those contributing to anti-racist design pedagogy and practice. We actively build power and share knowledge to build capacity and resilience in communities beyond the preconceived boundaries of our fields.
NEW FORMS OF DESIGN
that open the possibilities and methodologies for designing the built environment. We aim to co-create new formal and spatial imaginaries that serve broader, often overlooked, constituencies and consider multiple subjectivities.