I am an assemblage of:
cooperatives / spaces / technologies
learnings / teachings / communities
systems / heuristics / practices
architecture / pedagogy / software
families / friends / societies / cultures

I aim to be present.

Things I am thinking about lately:

(as of 2023-01)

How do you move inside of a project, or a life? What is the role of 'thinking' in 'designing' a future, which is to say, projecting an image or a goal that we wish to achieve -- versus a process of movement, of 'allowing' one's one practice or being to emerge and unfold into the world? (What is the practice of allowing?)

How am I, are you, able to be fully aware and in the present? What non-improvisational practices are necessary to improvise? Are non-presentness activities necessary to be in the present? I.e. How to focus on a drawing for the construction of a meditation space, or pre-purchase a plane ticket months in advance so that one may travel to a place that allows one to improvisationally travel.

What does the desire for 'community' really come from? How do attachment styles and family-of-origin dynamics and the psychodrama of our lives manifest themselves through a desire for a community, a career, a set of relationships, friends, a family, an identity?

Ethics and politics are (often) orthogonal to each other; politics gathers agreement and collective power; ethics can provide an internalized code that allows one to act, separate from the collective. Politics offers social exclusion and opposition as its legislating power; ethics offers integrity and a consistency to one's own self. Sometimes, a politics can be against one's own ethics. When the group pressures you to act in a certain way, following the group is to become political. 'Doing what I want' is also to be political, just in the opposite direction (of rebellion). An ethics allows the possibility of a path of integrity with the possibility of social exclusion.

What is the role of individual ethics in a collective context?

Space is a sociogenic attention/affordance medium that include cultural habits, social norms, and technological affordances. If so, what is really at stake for space is the question of "how do we want to live and relate with ourselves, with each other", and how do spatial affordances shape or enable ourselves to answer this question?

What does non-naive good faith communication that can survive bad-faith communication look like? What are practices of interaction and communication, separation and distance that (wisely, non-naively) navigate reparative and restorative practices?

How do good intentions and personal experience manifest in practices of understanding, rather than intentional harm and false righteousness? What kind of spatial, relational, technological approaches would hinder or aid real communication and reparative practices? (When to, you know, just pick up the phone?)

The wordly practices that constitute our non-productive spatial lives (eating, talking, dancing, sleeping, showering, peeing, shitting, fucking, cooking, reading); how are these shaped by the spaces we inhabit? How does this intersect with financial/political practices of real estate development, financial investment, if at all? If architecture as a practice involves the financial/political practices of shaping space, what name would we give a practice that involves the shaping of our non-productive, affective, psychic spatial lives?

Where and how do we hold our optimism towards technology?

We are our environments. Our cognition is distributed in the environment. We are the relationships and spaces that surround us. We think through our friends and collaborators and our spaces. If we drew a closed loop around our thought in space, most of it would be outside of our bodies.

Texts I'm thinking about / (re)reading lately:

More things I am interested in: Are.na

Recent/Upcoming News

I spoke at "The Internet(s) of Everything" , June 8, 2021

I spoke at "The end of the beginning of The Student Visa Review", a panel alongside with Menna Agha, Ashraf Salama, about a project I created as part of SURPLUS+ with Shea Fitzpatrick and Lucy Liu for RISD and the Canadian Center for Architecture. May 31, 2021

I spoke at "Roundable Discussion: COMMONS", a panel at the Yale School Of Architecture, hosted by the M.E.D Working Group for Anti-Racism, alongside Lauren Hudson, Sunny Iyer, and Rachel Valinsky. Nov 11, 2020

I spoke at Tei Carpenter's "By Other Means" seminar at the University of Toronto on Soft Surplus, Prime Produce, and alternative practices. Oct 16, 2020.

I spoke at Columbia GSAPP as part of the Techno-Critical Assemblies event series, organized by Andres Jaque and Xiaoxi Chen. Oct 15, 2020.

I launched the GSAPP Skill Trails. Jun 26, 2020.

I wrote a short polemic for Avery Shorts called WORMspace: WORMspace is what happens when you turn the residential lease and "normal wear and tear" into an aesthetic. It is an aesthetic of landlord power.. Nov 26, 2019.

I spoke at Neba Noyan's class, "Data Is Storytelling", on growing communities, spaces, and spatial programming languages. Oct 16, 2019.

The Cybernetics Library held an installation and workshop at the Tate Modern as part of the Higher Resolution with Hyphen-Labs workshop series at the Tate Exchange. September 27-29, 2019.

Intentional Estate Agency, a collaboration with Tei Carpenter, Jesse LeCavalier, and Chris Woebken, was part of the Oslo Architecture Triennale: The Architecture of Degrowth. Sep 26, 2019.

The Cybernetics Library had a booth and held a workshop at the NY Art Book Fair on Sunday, September 22nd, at 2pm. Invited by Printed Matter.

I wrote Tools of Collective Intelligence, published by Urban Omnibus, on invitation by Shannon Mattern. Sep 4, 2019.

I did a short Micro-residency at Dynamicland! Aug 7 - Aug 14, 2019.

I spoke on a panel on the future of work for the Out of Office exhibition at A/D/O, curated by Lexi Tsien and Talitha Liu of Soft-Firm, alongside Florian Idenburg and Kate Thatcher, moderated by Joseph White. July 18, 2019.

I was a speaker at Software For Artists Day, Pioneer Works. June 15, 2019.

An interview with Willa Köerner was published in The Creative Independent: On growing a cooperative like you’d grow a garden. June 11, 2019.

I was a resident as part of The Strange Foundation's Decelerator residency program. May 19 - May 27, 2019.

I spoke at the Living a Digital Life: Objects, Environments, Power conference, hosted at the University of Michigan's Taubman College of Architecture + Urban Planning. May 10, 2019.

The Cybernetics Library hosted a workshop called Cybernetic Marginalia, as part of February School, a temporary school-as-intervention created by MIT ACT students.

I taught Ethicsware, a class at The School for Poetic Computation, as part of the Code Societies Winter 2019 session, organized by Melanie Hoff.

On work and projects

I teach at Columbia University GSAPP, NYU Integrated Design & Media, and Parsons School of Design.

In the past:

I have taught at: The School for Poetic Computation, and Tsinghua University.

From 2012 - 2018, I was a founding member of Prime Produce (an intentional cooperatively-run space for social good).

From 2018 - 2021, I was a founding member of Soft Surplus (a community space for making and learning near each other)

From 2018 - 2022, I was a founding member of the Cybernetics Library, an artist-run library focused on socio-technological systems.

Past clients for design & technology work include: Stephanie Dinkins, Sidewalk Labs, Superbright, The New Inquiry, Vera Institute of Justice, Pioneer Works, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Storefront for Art and Architecture, Spatial Information Design Lab, NEW INC/GSAPP Incubator

My work has been mentioned/published in Urban Omnibus, The Creative Independent, Everything for Everyone: The Radical Tradition that Is Shaping the Next Economy, The Politics of Parametricism, Project Journal, The New Yorker, The Observer, The Awl, Vice, The New York Times, among other publications.

Things I do: Collective decision-making facilitation, critical & technological curriculum design, architectural design, construction management, commercial real estate renovation, physical prototyping, digital fabrication, software development, web development, physical computing, data visualization.

Things I specialize in: Starting & maintaining community-run organizations, designing and building/renovating physical spaces for collective organizations, creating cooperative decision-making tools and practices, developing custom computational design workflows & tools, structuring open & collaborative pedagogy practices, critical & technological curriculum design, poetic technology experiments and workshops.

Long-term (10+ yr) goals: Collectively designing, building, running, growing a cooperative school -- an intentional learning institution.

say hello

If you'd like to say hello, get in touch at:

dan [at] dantaeyoung [dot] com!