Engaging with News at Pakhuis de Zwijger

Speed dating Workshop for Journalists and Visual Makers

where: Pakhuis de Zwijger, Amsterdam (NL)
when: 14.03.2017
participants: 20 journalists and visual makers

This past week the Urban Stories Festival (UEB) took place at Pakhuis de Zwijger in Amsterdam. A wonderful four-day event provided workshops, screenings and lectures on journalism, urban issues, and new forms of storytelling. As a partner, ACED organised a speed date session for journalists and visual makers. An experiment and opportunity for both fields to get to know other, and collaboratively work on revised expressions of journalistic storytelling.

We started our 'newsy' session with the observation that nowadays - through digital media - every expression of the individual has the potential to be just as, or even more relevant and visible than publicity by an authority. We invited the participants to undertake a shared investigation into what interdisciplinary collaborations makes successful.

In the design landscape the emphasis is often on subjective expression and visual experiments, which generally results in a limited understanding of the actual theme. Journalism is a discipline in which reality, analysis and objectivity are often preferred above aesthetic qualities. Since the way in which a story is appreciated is just as important as the story itself, we strived for a continuous dialogue between form and content via our speeddating sessions, where the initial expertises remained intact as much as possible.

The diversity of the contributed themes was high. In addition to topics related to the theme of the festival, such as cities and residents, other themes among other cultural background, politics, sexuality, geography, education and religion came where approached. The different participants were genuinely involved, resulting in energetic cooperation sessions and interesting interim reflections.

We would like to thank Ewa Scheifes, Wilbert Van Der Heijden, Jasper Schelling, Dominika Cechová, Yifan Yaing and all the participants for their energy and enthusiasm during this shared experiment.

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