Vivien Tauchmann is a designer and researcher, exploring socio-political relations through an embodied and kinaesthetic approach. By positioning the human body as communicative material, she seeks to expose relational aspects of man- made infrastructures and subvert processes that seem to constitute social and cultural boundaries. Currently, she is based in Leipzig, Germany. She is founder of the United Negotiation of Otherness (www.unotherness.org), an initiative that engages critically with the politics of bodies and ‚othering’ through relational design practices. In this context, she developed “Self-As-Other-Trainings”, an ongoing series of performative trainings, that lead participants into physical acts of empathy. Rather than representing the underlying politics and the subjects of discrimination in a known mediatic format, Self-As-Other-Trainings address the necessity of educating our own bodies through the active embodiment of the ‘other’ in choreographed storylines, in order to evoke critical self-reflection and eventually provoke behavioural change. The project was part of different workshops and amongst others part of the StayLive! StayHome! challenge by performistanbul, Festival Schule Fundamental (Bauhaus Dessau), INSIST 2 (KU Leuven), the new local (Brussels) and the 4th Istanbul Design Biennal – A School of Schools.
Besides her own projects and collaborations, she is visiting lecturer for performative and relational design methodologies amongst others at the Design Academy Eindhoven and Jan van Eyck Academy, where she developed workshop formats in collaboration with Gabriel Fontana, Lucas Maassen and Amandine David.
She graduated from the Faculty of Applied Arts in Schneeberg, Germany (2015) and with a master’s in Social Design from Design Academy Eindhoven, the Netherlands in 2018.