The Ansible Institute

Summoning critical worldbuilders:

The Ansible Institute welcomes applications for its inaugural three week residency hosted by Café Tissardmine in the Moroccan Sahara, April 26-May 16, 2020.

Cafe Tissardmine

We are seeking proposals from practitioners across all media and disciplines with interest in the strategic use of speculative fiction.

The Ansible Institute is a transitory speculative fiction research laboratory, facilitated by artists/writers Martina Raponi and [M] Dudeck. We construct environments that activate the imaginative possibilities of worldmaking across media, while probing, mapping and deconstructing its modes and mechanisms through media analysis, collective reflectivity, seminars, critical dialogues, workshops and the sharing of eachother’s individual work in a supportive and critical environment. The residency also leaves considerable time for individual focus upon one’s own creative work in any media.


Please submit an application in any medium (no larger than 20MB) that addresses each of the following provocations, and email to by Nov. 20, 2019 :


Situate yourself, describe your practise.


Submit an actual or speculative proposal that identifies a point of departure for your exploration over the course of three weeks in the desert.

Note: All media are welcome, however, there is limited electricity and internet connection, so be mindful of this when imagining your proposal.

Why Speculative Fiction?

Please explain to us why speculative fiction and its accompanying strategies are relevant to your project or ongoing work.


This residency takes place in a remote location in the Moroccan Sahara, in the traditional territory of the Amazigh (Berber), in an outpost built and maintained by Karen Hadfield, who has lived among the Amazigh of the region for the past nine years. This location requires sensitivity to cultural norms that may be different to your own, and due to the sometimes harsh and challenging climate of the desert, a level of radical self-reliance, civic responsibility and communal effort is required. Please demonstrate your willingness and capacity to enter into this geo-political and cultural location.


The moment we enter the compound we enter a shared space where everyone is responsible for themselves, and also to the collective space we create together. How do you define Respect ? How do you define the responsibilities implicit in shared collective space ?

About the Residency:

We are interested in excavating the fabric of alternative realities, in dialogue with inherited realities, that blur the line between fact and fiction. The Residency will combine interdisciplinary intermedia dialogue sessions facilitated by Ansible with adequate time and space in the desert to devote to everyone’s individual praxis. Optional screenings will take place regularly, and participant-led workshops or seminars are very welcome. As the inaugural residency of the Ansible Institute we wish not to pre-scribe or pre- shape its direction but rather allow it to mutate in accordance with what everyone brings and builds together. Our role as residency facilitators is to provide conceptual scaffolding to house the collective and individual journey, while at the same time structuring it with a conceptual apparatus that provides creative nourishment for speculative fiction imaginaries.

We are assembling a playlist – that combines music/audio, film, text and other media which we encourage all participants to contribute towards. There will be no mandatory readings or viewings but a program of our workshops will be distributed at least one month prior to the residency so those who wish to familiarize themselves with the material we are referencing have ample time to do so. We will have a projector and so if you bring relevant films/media they can become a part of our optional screenings as well.

A typical day at Cafe Tissadermine is as follows: until 11 the residents can get breakfast. Early risers can use their time in the morning as they wish. From 11 to lunch time at 13:00/13:30 there is time for working on independent projects. Group Lunch, then group activity/seminar/workshop. Tea time is at 16:00 (optional). Between tea and dinner, rest and private work time in the afternoon. Group Dinner 19:00. After dinner: screenings or private rest time.

There are places for eight participants on the residency.

About the Location:

You will arrive by bus in the evening to the village of Erfoud, where you will be met by us and transported via 4X4 to the site of the residency.

There are no roads to/from the residency site – veteran Berber nomads drive across sandroutes to lead us to this remote and ancient Berber meeting site. We will live together at the compound of Café Tissardmine, which is fully equipped with showers (not always hot water), and the residency fee of €750 includes accommodation, 3 meals a day, a group trip to Erg Chebi Dune, and a group trip to the nearby village of Rissani. You will be responsible for transporting yourself to Marrakesh and taking a bus through the Atlas Mountains to meet up with the residency. The Compound can host up to eight participants, five solid-built permanent tents and four mud-brick rooms, all of which have en-suite bathrooms and showers (please specify if you would prefer mud-brick or permanent tent, and if you are flexible). Selected participants will receive a google form with further details and preferences in order for us to facilitate a safe shared environment. Please demonstrate to us your capacity to engage with the cultural, ecological and artistic environment you will be participating within.

For more information on Ansible Institute, Martina Raponi and [M]Dudeck please click here.

For more information on Café Tissardmine, please click here.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us directly at

Note : Applications are due Nov. 20, 2019 and we aim to have the results of the application available before Jan. 1, 2020. We will work to support participants to gather funding, providing letters of invitation and other resources to help make the trip possible.