Christof Windgätter
ifk Senior Fellow

Duration of fellowship
01. October 2021 bis 31. January 2022

Knowledge in Squares. On the Epistemology of a Basic Form


The starting point of this project is the historical-empirical as well as technical-design observation that rectangular forms dominate our cultural production, including mediation and reception processes of knowledge. Pertinent examples include pictures, maps, boards, grids, (display-)windows, desks, paper, books, playing surfaces, plan squares, stages, and screens. This project aims to identify exemplary scenarios of rectangularisation in order to examine those moments and mechanisms that have endowed them with epistemic relevance. In this way, forms are not to be understood as mere façades, casings or containers that serve aesthetic or commercial ends, but literally as frameworks. They format the im/possible. At the same time, such scenarios represent prehistories of a current trend that sees technologies leave their enclosures to spread as media environments.


Since 2012 Christof Windgätter is Professor of Media Theory at University of Europe for Applied Sciences (UE), Campus Berlin, Department Art & Design and since 2020 a research member at the Cluster of Excellence Matters of Activity - Image Space Material at Humboldt-University Berlin. After graduating in philosophy and German studies, he received his doctorate in Kulturwissenschaften and media theory at Humboldt University. From 2007 to 2009 he was Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin and in 2009 Fellow at the Akademie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart. Subsequently, he became Research Fellow at the Cultural Department of the City of Vienna. He was Assistant Lecturer at the Institute for Theatre, Film and Media Studies at University of Vienna, Lecturer at the Master’s programme Communication Design at University of the Arts in Bern and Guest Professor at Leuphana University Lüneburg.

In his habilitation, he addressed design strategies for branding in the sciences. His main fields of research are theory and history of media infrastructures, epistemologies of the visual in science, art and everyday life, procedures and politics of showing, design practices in modern knowledge cultures.

Homepage: http://christofwindgaetter.de/


gem. mit Gottfried Schnödl (Hg.), »Hautlichkeit«. Oberflächen in Wissenschaft und Design, Berlin 2021; »Was war Theorie? Zur Eskalation von Praxis in Geistes- und Kulturwissenschaften«, in: Internationales Jahrbuch für Medienphilosophie, Bd. 5, Berlin/Boston 2019, S. 67–85; gem. mit Claudia Blümle und Claudia Mareis (Hg.), Visuelle Zeitgestaltung (= Bildwelten des Wissens, Bd. 15), Berlin/Boston 2019; gem. mit Claudia Mareis (Hg.), Wild Thing. Unordentliche Prozesse in Design und Wissenschaft, Berlin 2018; Wissenschaft als Marke. Schaufenster, Buchgestaltung und die Psychoanalyse, Berlin 2016.

17 January 2022
  • Lecture
Christof Windgätter

Wen kümmert’s, wer fährt? Zur Anthropologie des Automobilismus


Zeitgenössische Mobilitätsvisionen tendieren zum Auto-Automobil. Dabei soll die Steuerung vom Fahrer zum Fahrzeug übergehen, das seine Fahrweisen selbst bestimmt. Eine Verschiebung, die auch die Menschenbilder der Autoindustrie sowie die Subjektivierungsweisen der Fahrzeuginsassen nicht unberührt lässt.