I am Mio Kojima (she/her), a Berlin-based German-Japanese designer, researcher, and educator.

My interest lies in playful and collaborative approaches to creating and sharing knowledge. Thus, my practice is often shaped by the idea of creating frameworks that can be filled, expanded, and reformed by others and that create space for community and exchange.

Latest Update: August 2022
Education,
Workshops
Managing Editor since 2021

Futuress is a hybrid between a learning community and a publishing platform with a mission to radically democratize design education and amplify marginalized voices. We host fellowship programs, organize lectures and panel discussions, curate exhibitions, and publish texts at the intersection of feminism, design, and politics!

Mentor since 2021

The Make Your School Hackdays are a workshop program to teach critical thinking and hands-on coding skills. Together with the kids, we closely look at their school environment and ask: What do you wish? What needs to change? How can you have an impact? The kids work in small groups within three days to build prototypes that manifest their proposals.

The Look Of Us: A workshop to encourage self-expression and positioning
Workshop
With Hanna Müller
Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design
Organized by the Community Toolkit initiative
April 2021

How can we express and externalize our opinions and personalities playfully, encoded or directly, loudly or timidly? How can we reflect on ourselves, position ourselves and let others participate in this process? How can we stand up for values, embrace our weaknesses, and allow for dreaming?
The Look Of Us is a framework for finding one's voice through the process of designing.

Texts,
Research
Zwischen Raum und Zeit: Ein Gespräch über Körperlichkeit in Digitaler Kommunikation
Interview by Simon Knebl
In Hopscotch Magazine
June 2022: Published on the occasion of HfG Graduates 21/22

How can we appropriate digital spaces and engage with them in a self-determined and emancipatory way? The conversation gives insights into the research project Hybrid Encounters/In Close Distance (see below). It shares experiences made during the performative investigation in the second part of the project and examines conventions and restrictions of digital communication.

Design: lob.tf and Bárbara Acevedo Strange
Edited by Lena Reitschuster

Hybrid Encounters/In Close Distance: On Acts Of Listening and Speaking in Hybrid Spaces
February 2022
Supervised by Michael Kryenbuehl, James Langdon, and Ivan Weiss

In two parts, the work investigates corporeality in digital communication such as video calls, phone calls and voice messages.
The first part, Hybrid Encounters, consists of interviews with performers and somatic coaches Roni Katz, Julia Bonn, Francisca Khamis Giacoman, and Tina Reden. The conversations share how their workshop formats were translated into a digital setting and examine different aspects of listening and speaking.
The second part, In Close Distance, is dedicated to the performative dialogue format Between Us by performer and choreographer Roni Katz. Together with the artist, three different digital settings were investigated in terms of texture, intimacy, and corporeality. Recordings of the performative investigations were shown as a 6-channel sound installation in the atrium of the Karlsruhe University of Art and Design in February 2022.
Excerpts of the first part can be read here.

E for Embracing Differences
With Hanna Müller
In Glossary of Undisciplined Design
May 2021: Spector Books, Leipzig

The Glossary of Undisciplined Design looks into undisciplinarity as a feminist unpacking of the field of graphic design, dogmatic rules, discriminatory structures, and a particularly one-sided canon. Carried by a decidedly fragmentary and collective backbone, the GUD handbook combines various theories and narratives of varying densities—from visual essays, hands-on experiments, interviews, or advertorials, to poems, speculative tales, and academic writing.
E for Embracing Differences is an excerpt of the project I don’t know. Are you sure?—an experiment on embracing frictions and disagreement when working together.
Read more about the project below.

C for Collective Uncertainties
With Hanna Müller, Juliana Vargas Zapata, and Severin Geissler
In Glossary of Undisciplined Design
May 2021: Spector Books, Leipzig

C for Collective Uncertainties is an excerpt of the conversation “I don’t know. Me neither” held at the Glossary of Undisciplined Design Symposium in February 2020. While giving insights into the projects F for Failing Queerly, P for Professional Amateur, and E for Embracing Differences—all published in the Glossary of Undisciplined Design—, the conversation dives into the underrepresented surprises of failure, the joys of amateurism, and the power of redefining weakness.

A Self in Relation: Tender rituals and joyful interventions in the face of loneliness.
March 2021: Futuress.org.

19 tender rituals, joyful interventions and narratives in the face of loneliness—developed by various artists, designers and writers as an invitation to experiment and engage with broader forms of relationships and notions of the self.
Check out all 19 approaches on the website and read the text on Futuress.org.

In Feminist Findings
July 2020: Futuress.org

Feminist Findings presents stories on the labor, loves, networks, hierarchies, friendships, fall-outs, struggles, victories, economics, designs, and daily lives of womxn in the past, working out what it might mean to organize a feminist praxis.
The Courage To Take Space sifts through the German 70s feminist magazine Courage. Mapping women's cafes, pubs, and feminist bookstores listed in the classified ads, the texts asks: Where did these spaces go, and how has the feminist movement changed to this day?
Read the whole text on Futuress.org

I don’t know. Are you sure?
With Hanna Müller
Supervised by Anja Kaiser and Rebecca Stephany

I don’t know. Are you sure? searches for a way of working together that actively engages with friction and appreciates differences instead of seeking the comforts of compromise and middle ground. The collection of fifteen collaborative methods is accompanied by short interviews reflecting on topics such as conflict, sharing skills and resources, and the resilience.
A free pdf can be downloaded here.

Talks,
Exhibitions
“The Power of Identity”
Lecture with Mujgan Abdulzade
October 2021

From a feminist perspective, the personal, the political, and the professional are inseparable. At the 2021 Weltformat Festival, which centered on the theme of identity, we talked about how this interweaving of seemingly separate realms becomes visible in Futuress’ structures: why schedules are political, how Futuress questions the notion of the objective, and how it creates space for a new design canon. The lecture was accompanied by video statements by the Futuress community members Heba Daghistani, Noemi Parisi, and Sherine Salla.

“I don’t know. Me neither.”
A reenacted conversation with Hanna Müller, Juliana Vargas Zapata, and Severin Geissler
Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst Leipzig
February 2020

Vulnerabilities are part or are every day realities but are habitually hidden away or smoothed over in professional contexts. While talking about the projects F for Failing Queerly, P for Professional Amateur, and E for Embracing Differences, the conversation aimed at sharing vulnerabilities to find common ground and solidarity.

Feminist Findings
Group Exhibiton
A-Z Berlin
30.07. – 24.09.2020

Feminist Findings showcased the joint research of the L.i.P. Collective—the very first Futuress fellowship. Spread over four continents and many time zones, 23 women and non-binary people connected through the beams of their computer screens to dig through digital archives, searching for the missing histories of feminist journals, magazines, zines, newspapers, and newsletters. A wunderkammer brimming with photographs, artefacts, logos, magazines, quotes, excerpts, resources, pages, footnotes, and digressions, Feminist Findings is a messy, knotted web manifesting its own collective research process.
The show has been curated by Eliot Gisel, Madeleine Morley, and Nina Paim.

Latest Update: August 2022