One of the consequences of our 24/7 economy, which is centred around production, efficiency and growth, is that we live in a permanent state of illumination and connectivity. This has major consequences for the lives and well-being of people, animals, landscapes and other living beings.

What You Don’t See argues that we must first learn to see these consequences before we can act. And that this requires new knowledge, specific instruments and different points of view. Het Nieuwe Instituut has invited a variety of speakers that let us see through their eyes.

Using aspects of light and darkness as the informers of time, Helga Schmid choreographed What You Don’t See as an ongoing conversation between perspectives, ideas, researches and speculations.




Melvin Moti has produced several films as well as artist books, objects and drawings, which have been featured in international exhibitions such as the Yokohama Triennale (Japan, 2014), and the Venice Biennale (Italy, 2013). Solo exhibitions include Art Sonje (South Korea, 2017), Mori Art Museum (Japan, 2014), EMPAC (USA, 2014), Pavilion (UK, 2013), Kunsthalle Lissabon (Portugal, 2012), Wiels (Belgium, 2010), The Museum of Modern Art (Germany, 2008), and Stedelijk Museum (the Netherlands, 2007.

Marjolijn Dijkman is an artist and co-founder of Enough Room for Space. Her works can be seen as a form of science-fiction, partly based on facts and research, but often brought into the realm of fiction, abstraction and speculation. Recent solo exhibitions include HIAP (Finland, 2019), OSL Contemporary (Norway, 2019), NOME (Germany, 2018), and The Munch Museum (Norway, 2018). International exhibitions include Contour Biennale 9 (Belgium, 2019), 4th Screen City Biennale (Norway, 2019), 1st Fiskars Biennale (Finland, 2019).

Andrei Bocin-Dumitriu studied Earth Sciences at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and University of Bucharest and has a PhD and MA in Geosciences and Environmental Geology. He was Assistant Professor and Researcher at University of Bucharest, and since 2010 has been working in global and regional science-based policy, remote sensing, and geographical information projects in the Netherlands. In 2018 he joined Space4Good, a start-up that uses space technology for social and environmental impact. Bocin-Dumitriu is involved in several projects focusing on sustainable cities and communities, affordable and clean energy, climate action, and ‘life on land and below water’. He leads the development of digital infrastructure for the Zoöp project’s remote sensing and monitoring services.

Zwart Licht (Black Light) stands for all the black that is placed in a good daylight. Black Light stands for contradiction. Black Light was founded by Hayzee and Akwasi. In the case of Black Light, it is an understatement that things can go fast. Five years after they first met in high school, they started making music together. At the end of 2007 producer Hayzee and rapper Akwasi, both active in the Amsterdam youth centre Studio West, decided to form a group together. Backup rapper Leeroy soon joined the group as a third member, after which the development of the three of them gained momentum. Within a year their debut album Bliksemschicht (Lightning Bolt) was ready to be released under their own management, two months later the CD was on sale all over the country via Top Notch. In the meantime, less than a year and a half after the formation of the group, Zwart Licht became an established name within the Dutch hip-hop.

Claudia Rot is a designer and urban ecology enthusiast from the Netherlands. She values the use of intersectional systems approaches to tackle complex problems, having studied climate and environmental sciences, and urban design. She uses cartography, graphic design, linguistics, and community science as learning tools for environmental justice advocacy.

Dirk Sijmons is one of the founders of H+N+S landscape architects, developing regional plans and research projects, receiving the Prince Bernhard Culture award in 2001. In 2007 Sijmons won the prestigious Edgar Doncker award for his contribution to Dutch culture, and the Rotterdam-Maaskant award in 2002. His published books include Room-for-the-River (2017), Moved Movement (2015), Landscape and Energy (2014), Greetings from Europe (2008), and = Landschap (Landscape, 1998). At the World Design Summit 2017 in Montreal Sijmons received the IFLA Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe award, and was curator of Urban by Nature: International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam (Netherlands, 2014). He was chair of Environmental Design and Landscape Architecture at TU Delft (2008-2015), and the first State Landscape Architect of the Netherlands (2004–2008).

Bert van der Horst received his PhD in Cell Biology at Erasmus University Rotterdam. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Molecular Genetics at Erasmus Medical Centre, where he is now professor of Chronobiology & Health. By applying state of the art technology, he aims to obtain fundamental knowledge on the biological/medical impact of the circadian system, which drives near 24-hour rhythms in behaviour, physiology and metabolism. To synchronise with the day-night cycle, this circadian clock is reset daily by light. As such, excessive use of artificial light in modern society (or light pollution) has a huge impact on our body clock. Added to this, our 24/7 economy requires many people to work at ‘non-standard’ times, which could lead to a chronic disturbance of our body clock, associated with a variety of diseases.

Hermes Chibueze Iyele is a rare talent. He was discovered during one of Qdance Center’s talent development projects known as ‘The M-A-D House’ (Music, Acting and Drama) in 2014. Since that program he has consistently performed as part of a group in Iwal’ewa (2015, Lagos, Nigeria), Rainmakers (TED Global 2017, Arusha, Tanzania), Yuropa (2018, Germany, Bremen, 2019, Bamako, Mali). In 2018 he had his choreographic debut with a collaborative performance with Chioma Ebinama and I Am Isigo (2018, ArtX Lagos, Nigeria) Unsustainble Privileges (2018, Lagos, Nigeria) and as a solo artist with The Village in Me (2018, Bariga, Nigeria). Hermes’ quest for knowledge led him to be awarded a partial sponsorship to be part of the Dancelab students of the international festival Dance Gathering 2018. He was a mentee under renowned choreographer Onikeku Qudus for more than 2-years. Chibueze has participated in most of the community development projects initiated by Qdance Center and has also performed in most of its choreographic creations.

Leanne Wijnsma’s work uses instinct as design, exploring the relationship between freedom and technology through smell-design and subterranean explorations. The immersive nature of her work lends itself to an investigation into human awareness and the impact of new technologies on individual and collective behaviour. Wijnsma creates experiences for our senses, trusting that instinct evokes an inherent truth and freedom of mind through action. Leanne Wijnsma has an MA in Visual Strategies from the Sandberg Institute Amsterdam, and now teaches Communication & Multimedia Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Utrecht. Her work has been exhibited at the Science Museum (UK), Transmediale (Germany), Biennale Interieur (Belgium) and Beijng Design Week (China). She received an e-culture grant from the Dutch Cultural Media Fund to research and develop The Smell of Data in collaboration with film-maker Froukje Tan.

Eline Ex was a professional cook in Paris when she first discovered her love of bread. Since then she has been baking for a living and now runs her own bakery in north Amsterdam using only her special yeast culture, sticking to a natural fermentation process when baking her interpretations of traditional Dutch recipes.

Dr Agnieszka Anna Wołodźko is a lecturer and researcher at AKI Academy of Art and Design where she established and coordinates BIOMATTERs, an artistic research programme exploring how to work with living material. Since 2017, she has lectured at Leiden University on posthumanism and intersections between art, ethics, and biotechnology. She is a curator of exhibitions and events on art, working with living materials and art-science relations. Her recent exhibition is Xenobodies in Mutation at Tetem (Netherlands). Her publications include Forgotten Rituals of Yearning, in Capacious: Journal for Emerging Affect Inquiry (2017), Between Bio(s) and Art—Intensities of Matter in Bioart in Inside. Outside. Other. Bodies in The Work of Gilles Deleuze and Michel Foucault, (eds.) Ann-Cathrin Drews, Katharina D. Martin (2017).

Paolo Patelli is a spatial practitioner and researcher based in Amsterdam. He is a multidisciplinary design academic exploring the intersections of space and technology, nature and society. Often through collaborative enquiries, he addresses architecture as a critical spatial practice. He is associate lector of Places and Traces at Design Academy Eindhoven, and holds a PhD from Politecnico di Milano.

Momtaza Mehri is a poet, essayist and meme archivist. She is the co-winner of the 2018 Brunel International African Poetry Prize. Her work has been widely anthologized, appearing in Granta, Artforum, Poetry International, Vogue and Real Life Mag. She is the Young People’s Laureate for London and columnist-in-residence at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s Open Space. Her chapbook Sugah Lump Prayer was published in 2017.

Ramon Amaro is a lecturer in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London and a researcher in machine learning, the philosophy of mathematics, black ontologies, and philosophies of being. Amaro completed his PhD in Philosophy at Goldsmiths and holds an MA in Sociological Research from the University of Essex and a BSE in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Ramon Amaro is a former research fellow at Het Nieuwe Instituut, and visiting lecturer at the Royal Academy of Art (KABK) in the Netherlands.

Dele Adeyemo is an architect and urban theorist conducting a Chase/AHRC-funded PhD at the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London. His research intersects black studies with urban studies to question how the rise of logistics is driving processes of urbanisation. Positioning slavery as the ghost in the machine of logistics, Dele explores how circulations established in transatlantic slavery, at the foundation of modernity, live on in the contemporary production of space. His work mobilises a black aesthetics through writing, film, and attention to movement and aural sensation in order to unsettle the machinic fantasies of logistics to reveal its fleshy underpinnings.

Dr Helga Schmid is an artist/designer and founder of the research platform Uchronia. She explores the multifaceted nature of time in an academic and public context. Schmid is a resident at Somerset House Studio, Senior Tutor in the School of Communication at the Royal College of Art, and in 2018 was a Designer in Residence at the Design Museum in London. She has worked as a researcher in the Architecture and Design department of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and her work has been exhibited and featured worldwide, including the Serpentine Gallery and Whitechapel Gallery (UK), Dia Art Foundation (USA), Istanbul Design Biennale (Turkey), and DMY Berlin (Germany).