Systems gives the first comprehensive overview of Jeanne van Heeswijk’s socially engaged artistic practice from the past decade. The book presents models for the design of social spaces as well as directions for the analysis of social structures.

The first chapter is dedicated to the games people play. Games are rehearsals of social interactions; they simulate reality and are open to experimentation; their rules establish limits within which freedom of action is possible. The second chapter investigates rooms people inhabit, i.e. the urban structures of social cohabitation. Here, external reference points of social conditioning can be found. The third chapter deals with the communities people create, as structures of individual, artistic positioning.

Many of van Heeswijk’s works fall into one of these areas, or else create structures opening up a view onto the social situation. The social spaces and strategies presented are documented with rules and drawings, texts and photographs. Here too she offers space for alternatives. Anecdotal remarks, pieces of advice or comments by the participants create a broad collage of possibilities, producing insights into a wide-ranging field of experiment.

With texts by Carlos Basualdo, Marjolein Schaap and Axel Lapp.

Published with the support of Stiftung Kunstfonds and the Fonds BKVB.