Josephine Baan (also goes by the names Joseph, Jo, or any variation thereof) is an artist and educator based between Zurich and Rotterdam. Their practice engages in art, education and collaboration as ways to forge creative resurgence. They’re interested in the complexities of collectivity and in the possibility of establishing a solidarity that does not homogenise, but affirms difference.

They make performances, installations, texts, group works, collaborative formats, and scores that explore the spaces and relationships between the flesh and the word; change and preservation; and roles and readings of power and control in relation to affect and gestures of care. Their current research focuses on the liberatory potential of performance practices, proposing performance as a means to—individually and collectively—interrogate and negotiate the constraints (gender, nationality, race, economic mobility, etc.) that one is borne into.

Joseph’s practice is closely linked to their work as an educator, which is influenced by radical pedagogy and non-hierarchical collaborative methods. They are a founding member of Rotterdam based educational collective sohere; a community of practitioners working in the fields of art, design and science who develop collaborative, horizontal learning environments. From 2019-2022 they co-ran Zurich based School of Commons; a grassroots initiative dedicated to the study and development of decentered knowledge, with a focus on practices of peer learning and commoning. They are currently teaching at the Chair of the History of Art and Architecture at the ETH in Zurich.

from the mud and the slime


Those dying years. It was about language and about what happens when language is uttered. How some things are said with such confidence they almost seem true. How you can adopt a voice to sound at once fraudulent and faithful. Some people use words with such certainty it bears no refute. I’ve never had this relationship to words, always stuck between languages, never grasping one as a tool to be wielded.