Introduction

Theatrum Mundi is an independent urban research centre. We develop creative approaches to questions in the relationship between the design and cultures of cities. Based in London, we also develop programmes through partnerships in New York, Paris, and Beijing.

Theatrum Mundi, meaning “theatre of the world”, stems from the idea that the stage can be a platform for experimenting with the interaction between society and space. Today, we work with a network including architects, urbanists, musicians, writers, choreographers, and filmmakers, to continue and reflect on this experimentation through critical and creative exchange.

Theatrum Mundi operates on a charitable basis, through donations from individuals and foundations. We develop themes for our activities through ongoing discussion with a network of collaborators. We undertake research, host workshops and seminars, support international exchanges, and stage public events, both independently and in partnership with other organisations.

Activities

Conferences

Theatrum Mundi organises mid-sized symposiums and larger conferences. These include 'Making Cultural Infrastructure' (2015); 'City, Religion, Capitalism' (2014) co-produced with the Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Whitechapel Gallery; ‘Presence and Absence in the City’ (2012) at Columbia University, ‘Currencies and Collectives’ (2013) in partnership with the Frankfurter Positionen, the Welkulturen Museum and Städelschule, ‘Common Ground: Between Urban and Art Practice' (2012) at the Venice Biennale of Architecture.

Workshops

We host a wide range of workshops on light, sound, movement and the city. All of these are purposefully small and informal discussions, emphasising maker-to-maker exchange. We also host more intensive week-long ‘studio based’ workshops with emerging practitioners. We encourage cross-participation between workshops and draw colleagues from a wide range of art and urban disciplines.

Exhibitions

We are interested in translating ideas and discussions through exhibitions to a wider public. TM's ideas challenge ‘Designing for Free Speech’ exhibited with the American Institute for Architecture in New York in 2014. And In 2015 'Designing the Urban Commons' exhibited in London as part of the London Festival of Architecture, and in Berlin as part of the MakeCity Festival.

Research

TM is dedicated not only to providing a forum for face-to-face exchange, but also to continually investigate the methods, contents and outcomes of our activities.