Commercial Reboot | Commercial Reboot
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Commercial Practices;

Art & Design Education in the Next Economy

The Commercial Practices represents one of the fields that the Willem de Kooning Academy, art & design academy Rotterdam, distinguishes for graduating artists and designers.

How does the Next Economy, with its economical and industrial transformations, affect art and design practices?  Technological disruptive innovations, ecological crises and bottom-up approaches have redefined traditional concepts of production, distribution and authorship / ownership. Hierarchies between makers, designers, producers, companies, consumers and individuals are changing rapidly and radically. This paradigm shift creates new opportunities for designers and artists as visionary, critical contributors to these new designed systems.


This economical landscape in transition requires a new mind-, skill- and toolset. In the Commercial Practices, we educate artists and designers in this new context. We believe that a transdisciplinary design approach and a critical, explorative view on innovation and new technologies are crucial skills for the hybrid practices of artists and designers in their role as instigators and collaborators of the Next Economy. This movement will significantly alter the way people live and work, and have an influence on the social and cultural fabric of the public domain. Consequently, it will transform the way we design, what we design and for whom.

Key Questions

  • How can artists and designers position themselves in this new economy?
  • How and for which future markets will they design?
  • What is their exclusive and distinctive role and identity in a commercial context?
  • How will these developments change visual and design culture at large?