On Saturday 31st October we participated at the symposium Doing Sounding Exchanging Thinking: The Auditory Experience of the Social (DSET) at Foundation B.A.D. (Rotterdam) with an all new research work titled ‘Making Researching Exchanging Drinking’. The event was an opportunity to try-out some ideas currently under development within ‘The Institute for The Design of Tropical Disease’ project, enacting what we have come to refer to as “research theatre”. Much like the public dissections that took place at the Royal College of Physicians (London) and the Theater Anatomicum at the Waag (Amsterdam) in the mid-eighteenth century, research theatre employs the process of disassembly (deconstruction) and observation to examine the inner structures, functions and relationships of components that determine the status quo. Research Theatre, as the phrase suggests, implies the act of researching in public, adopting hands-on material investigations and prototypes as a means to both research and discuss the insights-to-date with members of the public. The exchange thus stimulates observations, stories and anecdotes that in turn inform and enrich the research process. On this occasion we asked: how might the DIY recreation of a classic cocktail (Gin and Tonic) lead to a reimagining of tropical disease?

Throughout the day we went through the step-by-step of creating our own tonic water from Cinchona bark to explore the borders between recreational and medicinal drink. At 14:00 the bar officially opened for “consultations”, with members of the public invited to order a tonic infused drink in exchange for a conversation on the topic of tropical disease. We were additionally joined for the day by Molecular Biologist Alex Motta from 010SciArt who sat in on the bar consultations and added another theoretical perspective to the discussions. All-in-all it was a thoroughly enjoyable and thought provoking day with lots of new insights and reflections, and a newly gained appreciation of bitter-based drinks.

Sponsored by: De Nieuwe Amsterdamse Spuitwaterfabriek and Bobby’s Dry Gin

Photography by: Gyalpo Batstra

Symposium curated by: Thickear

31st October 2015 @ 11:00 – 17:00 hrs
Foundation B.A.D.
Talingstraat 5
3082 MG Rotterdam
www.foundationbad.nl
www.thickear.org