Museum Of Arte Útil

The new Arte Útil platform is online!

The Museum of Arte Útil has closed his doors, but its ideas are evolving in multiple projects.

One of them is a new website where an updated version of the archive is displayed.

Please visit for the latest developments around Asociación de Arte Útil, where you can find the new activities, initiatives and projects developed so far!

The Museum of Arte Útil team stands in support of Tania Bruguera

Tania was arrested and freed three times last week for having organized a public performance in La Havana’s Plaza de la Revolución. She was detained with several other Cuban artists, activists, bloggers and journalists who participated in Yo Tambien Exijo campaign. The campaign arose after Castro and Obama’s declarations on Dec. 17 about  the restoration of diplomatic ties, potentially bringing an end to five decades of hostility. The first arrests were made on Tuesday (December 30) after Tania called a public performance whose aim was to leave an open microphone so that Cubans could freely express their thoughts (Tatlin’s wisper #6 – Havana Version).

The event has attracted widespread media coverage both in favour and against her action and a public letter in support of Tania addressed to Raúl Castro was written and signed by over a thousand people around the globe. The petter stated: ‘We firmly believe her detention, and the withdrawal of her Cuban passport, are inappropriate responses to a work of art that simply sought to open space for public discussion.’

We are relieved that Tania has been released, but are conscious of the troubles she might face from now on.

Tania, we are with you


An interesting comment about the recent events written by Coco Fusco and published via e-flux could be read here 

To follow all the developments please visit Yo También Exijo platform on Facebook or Twitter

Podium / Discussion + The Umbrella / Arte Útil Archive

Last year, The Museum of Arte Útil was initiated by Tania Bruguera in collaboration with Queens Museum, Van Abbemuseum and realised by its users. The core of the exhibition was an ongoing archive which comprehends over two hundred case studies that imagine, create and implement beneficial outcomes by producing tactics that change how we act in society.

Now, on the 25th of October, during the afternoon of the last Saturday of Dutch Design Week,The Umbrella and Arte Útil will gather at the Studio of the Van Abbemuseum, and will reflect on their recent activities, furthermore discuss the future of The Umbrella Network and Arte Útil Archive, while exploring for the first time the cross section between the two initiatives.

We invite you to join this podium and open discussion between a spontaneous network of Eindhoven based socio­cultural design, and an ongoing archive that explores numerous Arte Útil case studies and we hope this afternoon at the Van Abbemuseum will inspire visitors and opens up new cooperative realities.

 25 Saturday, October 14:00 ­ 17:00

De Studio in Van Abbe Museum

Free entry


Arte Útil and Common Ground project

‘Common Ground – Platforms through Networks’ is a project developed by Christine van Meegen and  Lidia Vajda in collaboration with Design Academy Eindhoven and other institutions in the city.

There are three things that Common Ground aims to bring together: Spirit, space, material. And: people.
It is a tool to make use of abundant resources and unused space, working with food as central aspect, as a basic need that brings us all together.
Common Ground focuses on environmental concerns, promoting alternative structures in design. Making the environment the subject of work, Common Ground creates places where furniture, architecture, city and landscape are constantly in relation to one another, reflecting human needs, interacting and transforming over time.
Common Ground makes complex systems more accessible by improving networks through rituals and shared responsibility, and finding new ways of looking at the world around us.
This network of processes matters today. Local scale connected on a global level.
Time for cooperation.

The museum of Arte Útil decided to donate part of the wood used for the installation with the project.

To know more, visit the website here

Memetro: get the app for your smartphone!

The crowfunding campaign was successful and thanks to the users’ participation the app has been funded!

So, if you are living either in Spain or in Mexico, or you are planning to visit these countries, don’t hesitate to get the app, it’s available and it’s free!

memetro website

App on the Apple Store

App on the Google Store



Dignity has no nationality

The Museum of Arte Útil supports the campaign ‘Dignity has no nationality’ promoted by Tania Bruguera.

An artistic response to a recent shift in world culture. ‘Dignity has no nationality’ aims to change public perception on immigration and redress the assault to the citizenship rights of undocumented migrants throughout the globe.
Feel free to sign the petition, to use the hashtag #dignityhasnonationality , #franciseffect share and spread the word sending to your friends this message to encourage them to visit the website and sign.


Become a host of the Human Hotel!

The Human Hotel was a successful project produced and sustained by the Museum of Arte Útil so we are keen to carry on with its development.

Unfortunately some subscription forms for the Human Hotel were misplaced during the course of the exhibition meaning those who filled out the forms have not had a response, but the Human Hotel is still available in Eindhoven!

If you want to subscribe to become a host you can send an email to and the artists will be happy to welcome you in the project.

This last week in the Museum of Arte Útil

This week will be the very last of the Museum of Arte ÚtiI. However, there is no reason to be sad as we will inspire and excite you with a diverse programme of workshops and events.

The prosperous Honest Shop will shut its doors together with the Museum of Arte Útil to make room for the exhibition of Hito Steyerl. But… the Honest Shop reopens in April from a new location. Producers and visitors – stay tuned!

On Thursday night we will screen the documentary The Tinaja Trail and the Transborder Immigrant Tool by Bryce Clayton Newell (2013), about a technological device that helps migrants from Mexico on the dangerous trail to the USA. From the documentary we learn about class and racial inequalities, and that the difference between humanitarian service and illegal activity is not always black and white.
The screening takes place in the Room of Controversies at 18.30.

On Friday night the Museum of Arte Útil will co-host the fourth edition of the Young Art Night. In the Use-it-Yourself space Milou Jilesen demonstrates how to make paints and dies of natural products. And when you get tired of dancing on eclectic music, you can relax during a massage in our Light Therapy Room.

We will start off the weekend with the creation of a collective artwork, led by painters Nicole Verhoeven en Nicole van Herpen. On Sunday afternoon you can take part into the second edition of the workshop ‘Use and Form-of-Life’, organised in collaboration with Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory. During this two-day workshop around the book The Highest Poverty by Giorgio Agamben, we search for alternative lifestyles. Please subscribe by emailing Suzanne Tiemersma.

For a complete overview of our activities, please check our calendar.

We are looking forward to meeting you in the Museum of Arte Útil.

Arte Útil proposals, knowledge, thoughts, insights, ideas

Corresponding to the underlying thoughts of the exhibition, the wood of the construction of the Museum of Arte Útil will find a new purpose after the exhibition.

Groendomein ‘t Wasven will use the wood for its Summer programme. The thematic circular construction will have parallel programming, varying from lectures, musical performances to workshops. After Summer, the same wood will be used by children to build huts and tree houses in Speelpark de Splinter.

Furthermore, musician Geert Tiersma will use some panels for the ceiling of his interactive musical instrument museum for children. Last not least, Design Academy students Lidia Vajda and Christine van Meegen will take some of the wood for their city gardening project ‘Common Ground‘.

Arte Útil, Social Design and instrumentalisation

On March 6th the last public conversation took place in the Room of Controversies.

The line between Arte Útil case studies and social design is often barely visible. Within these initiatives the question of instrumentalisation often arises with a gap developing between the initiator and users. How and where are people being instrumentalised and to what ends?
Guests: Azra Akšamija (via Skype), Jan Boelen, Pablo Calderón Salazar, Jalila Essaïdi, Jeanne van Heeswijk.

Did you miss it? Check out the video documentation on Youtube!

This week in the Museum of Arte Útil

Until Thursday March 20th, Rotterdam based artist Jeanne van Heeswijk will be in residence developing a project in Eindhoven. If you have not met her yet, this is your very last chance to have a conversation with her on her projects!

On Thursday afternoon Jeannette Petrik will present her project ‘A parasitical breed of consumer’, in which she made sausages from leftover vegetables. This way Jeannette illustrates how leftovers can be turned into something useful – and delicious! Come and listen to her in the Room of Controversies at 5 p.m..

On Thursday also the musical documentary Shocking Blues & Reggae in screened is the library. In the documentary we see how punk rock band Hard Headed Soul organised a concert in a hospital for mentally disabled people near the end of the Balkan war. A number of short music films and videos from the Zesde Kolonne archive precede these screenings.

On Sunday you can participate in several workshops. Artist Eelke van Hoof introduces ‘Flow Painting’ to participants. By using small water sprays oil paints are applied directly onto the canvas. Fans of music can joint into the Sing Along sessions of AlaudaVocalis led by Hubert Koniuszek. Sheet music is available at the location, and midi’s can be found here.

For a complete overview of the activities in Museum of Arte Útil, please see our calendar.

We hope you can join us in the Museum of Arte Útil.

MEMETRO APP: Crowd-funding campaign

Memetro APP is a social network that detects ticket checkers throughout public transportation networks of your, or any, city. The persons affected by the Memetro disorder can use the App to share alerts and be informed of system wide ticket checks in progress, in real time

If you suffer from Memetro this is your application. Memetro is a disorder that affects memory function, that causes affected persons to forget to validate their public transport tickets when they enter the transport facilities. If you suffer from Memetro its essential that you be informed in order to avoid economic sanctions and the resulting stress and malaise.

The principal mission of the social network shall be to promote mutual support amongst affected persons and provide the necessary tools and knowledge such that those who suffer Memetro suffer as little as possible. Checkpoint statistics, geolocalization alerts embedded in maps, filters by type of transport and information for the affected are some of the capabilities offered by the this potent collective tool. The Memetro Apps is 100% open source code and functions internationally. Now more than ever the Memetro platform and those affected by this disorder need your help .

Participate in its Crowd-funding campaign! You will receive some individual Rewards as a KIT MEMETRO,INVITATION TO BETA TEST, MEMETRO BAG, MEMETRO T-SHIRT….

Or  support its DEVELOPERS: The project is open to any collaboration in programming and computing resources with the intention of improving the quality of the app.

Go to: 

Walking in the darkness

On Tuesday the 18th of February, the team formed by Laurie Jo Reynolds, Giles Clarke, Eleni Gogou and Garazi Ansa went again to the Vluchthaven to continue the workshop and to design the rest of the flags. For that day, it was planned a trip to Utrecht, to support the demonstration organized by refugees that are living in there.

Due to a change of plans, the team stayed at the Vluchthaven and they kept interviewing people and taking more photos. In afternoon they went to visit the Vluchtgarage, an old building in the South-West of Amsterdam that was squatted for the refugees when they were evicted from the Vluchthaven. They spent some hours there, and they spoke with them about their extremely bad situation. After having diner, the team and some of the refugees joined a meeting where some politicians were discussing the future of the refugees in the Vluchtgarage.  There, the team distributed a collection of some thoughts and quotes that Laurie Jo Reynolds had  previously chosen from the book Voices (Voces) written by Antonio Porchia.

Lights, camera, action!

On Monday the 17th of February, the human rights photographer Giles Clarke, landed in Amsterdam straight from New York to make a photo-reportage about the situation of the refugees in The Netherlands. He joined the team composed by Laurie Jo Reynolds, Eleni Gogou and Garazi Ansa.

They spent the whole day in the Vluchthaven discussing, interviewing and photographing the occupants of the old prison. During the day, the team led a workshop, where the refugees made new signs and flags of their own countries to hold in the streets in the future demonstrations.

A Suitcase full of sticks, cardboard and flags

On Saturday the 11th of January, during the first public discussion called ‘Arte Útil, Activism and Sincerity’, Laurie Jo Reynolds and Thomas Phillipe Guya, had the chance to meet. Thomas is a member and a representative of WE ARE HERE, a human rights group composed by refugees who applied for asylum in The Netherlands and whose claims have been rejected.

Laurie Jo and Thomas were both enthusiastic about each other’s projects and work, so they started thinking about a new proposal together, focusing on the struggle of the refugees in Amsterdam. Through a collective action Laurie Jo and Thomas have been trying to increase the visibility of the group and enhance the communication of their problems to the public by activating different actions.

On Sunday the 16th of February, Laurie Jo Reynolds with Eleni Gogou and Garazi Ansa (who are assisting her in the project) left the Museum of Arte Útil and went to Amsterdam for 3 days where they organized a 3 days workshop. They were carrying a big bag and a huge suitcase full of materials!

Their first stop was the Vluchthaven, an old prison in which some of the refugees are living at this moment.  There, after meeting Thomas, they defined the schedule for the following days. By the end of the day they also have the chance to rest and they had some delicious Sudanese food.

Legislative theatre in the city

Luc Opdebeeck & Hector Aristizábal

Theatre for Change – With new members of the community, women immigrant collectives, activists, lawyers …  at the Museum of Arte Útil, Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven.

Everybody is welcome

Are you new members of Eindhoven community ? Are you member of a womens  collective or alone ? Are you dealing with your “Inburgering”? Do you have any experience you would like to share about living in Eindhoven? Do you care about the situation of refugees in the city, the country and Europe? You are welcome to our workshops on Saturday 8 March 2014 and Sunday 9 march 2014, starting at 11.00am to 17.00pm.
U can participate one or both days.

During these 2 days, we will share and discover what are important issues and difficulties for the participants around immigration, integration and women rights. What do you need to feel integrated and be part of the Dutch society? What is against integration? What is in favour? We are looking for stories of world citizens about their experiences and their points of view.

We will gather all these stories to build a legislative theatre presentation during the second part of the project. The legislative Theatre is a methodology which objective is to open up a dialogue between citizens and institutional entities so that there is a flow of understanding between both groups.

After participating in one or both days of workshops, if you would like to participate and be part of the legislative theatre presentation as well, you will be invited to join the rehearsals on Tuesday 11 March and Wednesday 12 March to prepare the presentation programmed for Thursday 13 March 2014 at 19.00pm.

(Previous theatre background or knowledge is not required; everybody can play a role )

Information and registration: Gemma Medina Estupinan:

Attention please!

Unfortunately we have been trying to fix the website since a couple of weeks. The submission form for proposing a project doesn’t work properly.

We suggest sending your proposals for the Archive to


Sorry for the inconvenience.


Arte Útil, 2.0 culture and disobedience

On Thursday the 20th of February the third public discussion took place in the Room of Controversies.

Today, art has the potential to challenge the status quo through new forms of technology. Within the current system the law and our access to information does not always protect the many but the few in power. Civic disobedience is one strategy to disrupt the status quo. But who gains from such forms of disobedience and is this an effective way to disrupt power?

Guests: Ricardo Dominguez (Skype), Carmin Karasic, Steve Kurtz (Skype).

Did you miss it? Check out the video documentation on Youtube!


The archive as a tool #2

This week the Arte Útil Archive will travel to Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid. During the symposium ‘The new abduction of Europe‘  a selection case studies will be discussed in the frame of five different workshops. The strategies analysed in the Museum of Arte Útil will be used as starting point to reflect upon different issues.

The aim of the event is not to be a brief flash of light in the darkness but to break down the divisions between public debate and collective action, opening up a replicable process in other cities and regions across Europe, and offering a strategic, programmatic repertoire for the European emancipatory movements in order to build a common process.

The opening session on 27th February will be streamed live at 6:30 p.m. at Van Abbemuseum/Museum of Arte Útil (Room of Controversies). Free entrance.

You can follow the live stream here

Why a Museum of Arte Útil?

In this interview between curator Annie Fletcher and director Charles Esche it can be understood the position of the Van Abbemuseum as a 20th Century institution, towards the Museum of Arte Útil, a proposal for the 21st Century.

Could Arte Útil be a new model for the future of cultural institutions?

The archive as a tool #1

This week the Arte Útil Archive will travel to the Jan van Eyck in Maastricht. During the Open Studios (19-21 Feb) researcher and Arte Útil team member Alessandra Saviotti will present a selection of case studies in relationship with some strategies analysed in the exhibition. From the 19th to the 21st of February visitors will be encouraged to discuss with her the meaning of Alegal, Institutional Repurpose and Space Hijack in the frame of three different workshops.

The whole online archive will be available in her studio as well as ‘Toward a Lexicon of Usership‘, a lexicon of terms written by theorist Stephen Wright for the Museum of Arte Útil that will serve as a textual tool kit for users.

For more info check the Jan van Eyck website here!

The future of the Honest Shop

On Thursday we had the first meeting with the suppliers of the Honest Shop.

The first phase of the project started in October with the installation of an Honest Stall. In collaboration with Grizedal Arts, initiator of the project, we launched an internal campaign in order to foster the production; 7 people composed the first group of suppliers.

Since then, the number of the producers has been growing day after day, until a total amount of 60 people, who are providing local and homemade products every week.

We were very pleased to hear that there is the desire to keep the Honest Shop alive! Hopefully we will maintain it also in the future.

Stay tuned!

WochenKlausur in Eindhoven: final presentation

During the last 2 weeks, the Austrian collective Wochenklausur has been in residence at MoAU where they met citizens, different representatives of cultural groups and organisations in order to understand which are the urgencies in the city.

On Saturday they presented their research and some other inspiring projects, generating an interesting discussion about the relationship between the city and the museum. We hope we sowed the seeds of future developments.

Arte Útil, Gentrification and Misuse

On Thursday the 6th of February the second public discussion took place in the Room of Controversies.

Art initiatives have increasingly taken on the role of urban planners. Equally, governments and city councils look to artists to regenerate communities. But often good intentions are coopted whilst the artworld settles for reading case studies within a limited framework. Within such initiatives who and what is being misused?

Guests: Bik Van der Pol, Theaster Gates (via Skype), Renzo Martens, WochenKlausur.

Did you miss it? Check out the video documentation here!


Creating bridges within the city: Wochenklausur working at the MoAU

The Austrian collective WochenKlausur is working in the Room Space Hijack. They are conducting different interviews and inviting inhabitants of Eindhoven to share their opinions about the city.

What do you think is the most relevant problem this city is facing today? Tell them and let´s see what they can do.

Archiving a project: Laurie J. Reynolds working at the MoAU

Laurie J. Reynolds has been pretty busy today. She is working organizing the archive of Tamms Year Ten project. After closing the prison, there is still a lot of work to do: letters to classify and a huge amount of documents to put in order.

Would you like to know more about her project? Would you like to understand what happened in the Tamms prison?

Come and ask her, she is working in the Space Hijack Room, and Leon (the cat) is there as well!

Arte Útil, Activism and Sincerity

On saturday the 11th of january the first public discussion took place in the Room of Controversies.

Art has the potential for real social change. Yet often initiatives that migrate between art and activism are accused of lacking in either political or artistic sincerity. Who are these initiatives really for, what are their motives and what are they achieving?

Guests: Tania Bruguera, Thomas Phillipe Guya, Laurie Jo Reynolds, Jonas Staal, Elke Uitenuis.

Did you miss it? Check out the video documentation here!

Freehouse: Radicalizing the Local – closing symposium

January 15 – 17, 2014

International closing symposium of the Freehouse art project on co-ops as an organisational form in order to combine value determination, local qualities, organisation, economy, initiative and co partnership.

During a public conference a group of international experts will exchange and explore knowledge on new organisation and economic forms. The program comprises a series of presentations, workshops, deliberations, feedback sessions and discussions that closes with deliberations on the addressed subjects. The conference will be closed with the festive start of the neighbourhood co-op.

The symposium is curated by Ashraf Osman (Zurich University of the Arts) in collaboration with Pablo Calderón (social designer) and Jeanne van Heeswijk (visual artist).



- January 15, 9.30-17.30: New Organisational Forms

– January 16, 9.30 – 17.30: New Economic Forms

– January 17, 9.30 – 15.30: Re/forming the Future,

15.30: Handover to Afrikaanderwijk Co-op


Language: English

Location: Wijkwaardenhuis, Pretorialaan 141, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

More info:



Radicalizing the Local

Freehouse has focused since 1999 on the micro-urbanism emerging in small communities across the city. The project is based on inclusive urban development through community participation and self-organisation and on co-operative cultural production as a means for economic and social growth.

In 2008 Freehouse became involved in the development of the Afrikaanderwijk in the south of Rotterdam. It tested new plans for the market and successfully setup several communal workshops. In order to secure the gathered capital and qualities for its inhabitants, Freehouse developed a skill-based neighbourhood co-op that will take over its functions s as of 2014.

Freehouse is a project initiated by Jeanne van Heeswijk and is made possible in collaborations with local and international experts. Radicalizing the Local is made possible with the support and collaboration of the Mondriaan Fund, Creative Industries Fund NL, Stichting DOEN and AIR.

Activating the Museum of Arte Útil Eindhoven

Great to see how many people are using the Museum of Arte Útil hanging various projects from the archive all over the place. It means that the exhibition is changing every day, so come and have a look at what’s new!



Made art-event at the Museum of Arte Útil

What a great evening!

Made members enjoyed three workshops at the Museum of Arte Útil in the Light Therapy room, in the Space Hijack room with Jeannette Petrik and in the Do-it-Yourself room with Yomango.

Have a look here for more info and pictures.


Opening speeches by Charles Esche, Tom Finkelpearl and Tania Bruguera

Did you miss the opening of the Museum of Arte Útil? Don’t worry, here you can see the opening speeches by Charles Esche, Director of the Van Abbemuseum, Tom Finkelpearl, Director of the Queens Museum and Tania Bruguera, Initiator of the Museum of Arte Útil.



Interview Tania Bruguera

Museum of Arte Útil is initiated by the artist Tania Bruguera, developed with the Van Abbemuseum and constructLab and realised by its users.

Nick Aikens (NA), curator Van Abbemuseum: What is Arte Útil?

Tania Bruguera: The útil in Arte Útil means not only the beneficial things that art can produce, or the concrete beneficial outcomes for its users, but it means art as a tool for social change.

NA: Could you talk about the criteria for Arte Útil?

TB: I previously had an idea of what Arte útil was but when I needed to share with other people the selection process we formulated the eight criteria. The first deals with re-thinking a new use for art in society. Because Arte Útil has two aspects – one is which to propose a new way in which art can be used for something else, but also how to use all the benefits art offers so you are able to do things that otherwise you cannot do. The last criteria deals with aesthetics – so we are claiming that aesthetics is part of a transformation process – that is an integral part of a much larger process.

NA: Why do you want to name a movement as an artist? Aren’t you against a canon of art history, why do that inside a museum?

TB: To call it a movement is to acknowledge it is not a new practice – and this is not my own personal practice, it has a history. In 1981 there was an exhibition called Useful Art in the Queens Museum in New York – but the way they saw the usefulness of art was via the beatification of already useful art objects. In our case we are trying to hi-light what we call ‘aes-ethics’, which is the beauty of the ethics that is generated in the process of working in the real and with change. I was looking for a way or form to bring the conversation to a level where it would involve more people and the museum is the place to do that.

NA: What does it mean to bring practice that happens in the world, outside galleries, into the museum?

TB: I think institutions are more and more interested in dealing with this type of production and with social practices. But, you are right, what does it mean to institutionalize a living work? Some people have asked me ‘why do you need to do a museum’. It’s precisely to have the debate with the museum and artists about the challenges when inevitably this type of work becomes institutionalized.

NA: You are an artist who has introduced the term Arte Útil. What is the difference for you as an initiator of a project like this and creating your own work?

TB: The first thing to say is that the first time Arte Útil was used was in the manifesto of Eduardo Costa, an Argentinian artists who in the 60s wrote a manifesto, which was the description of a work he wanted to do in the streets. So I didn’t create the term, I’m actually trying to amplify its use. As a practitioner you are  constantly confronted with ideas of authorship. Here the author has changed into what we call the initiator, meaning my role is not to carry this idea all the way through, but to present it and to start a conversation. Hopefully, if to goes well, more people engage and it continues through the users of the project.

NA: Lastly I would like to ask if you think all art should be Útil?

TB: As propagandist in chief I would say yes, of course! Seriously, I think in 2013, 13 years into the 21st century, most of the work we think about or produce still uses ways of thinking about art from the 20th century. So hopefully yes – all art should strive to be Útil!

Stay at the Human Hotel

Would you like to stay in Eindhoven up to 3 nights for free? The Human Hotel is what you are looking for, if you are coming to use the Museum of Arte Util. We can host you in the Human Hotel. Do you live in Eindhoven and have a spare room in your home? Would you like to host an artist, curator or student? You can become a host for the Human Hotel and explore the potential of the private home as part of public life!

For more information, please contact:

Come to the Honest Shop

A selfregulating shop were honest, local and homemade products can be bought or sold. No airmiles or fake smiles. Usership leads to an endless supply. Come and use the Honest Shop in the Museum of Arte Útil.