Cruising CuratorsAbout Us

Cruising is a practice that can take shape in different forms. It could be sailing about without a precise destination or wandering and waiting if someone makes eye contact. It could be driven by sexual stimulation or merely by curiosity and the need for dialogue.
       The coincidental, ephemeral and yet meaningful encounters serve as an extension of knowledge-production, reflection and learning together: Cruising Curators is an open invitation to think, act, recollect, fuse and circulate together with our communities-to-be.
       A space for intertwining intercommunal curatorial practices is initiated by a group of cultural workers who are in search of a continuous tale of interactions, bringing spontaneous hunches, instants and stories from theory, fiction and daily spheres into artistic practices, which aren’t necessarily bound to a physical manifestation of an end product. Adopting cruising and crossing paths within our urban jumble as a research method, the goal is to initiate different forms of contact through the curatorial. In response to the world’s fast-paced and consuming setting, slow methodologies are used, allowing long-term exercises and in-depth discussions to unfold organically.
       The collective started off as a working group of the 11th Berlin Biennale’s Curatorial Workshop How now to gather and is currently constituted by: Bengisu Çağlayan, Raphael Daibert, Luise Leon Elbern, Eirini Fountedaki, Viviane Tabach and Sarnt Utamachote.

Founding Members

Bengisu Çağlayan (she/her) is a curator and cultural worker practising within the realms of curatorial research, artistic collaboration methodologies, (non-)institutional partnerships and fundraising for the arts. Mainly interested in debates on ‘the moving body’ and the experience of choreographic phenomena, Çağlayan combines research and practice that address the isolated and collective psyche of subjugated bodies. She received a research scholarship from the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe in 2023. Her five-part radio show that brings together soundscapes of politics, uprisings and identities aired on Refuge Worldwide, a community radio based in Berlin.      
      Keeping a second base in her native Istanbul, Çağlayan worked for the Istanbul Biennial since 2016 while undertaking additional roles for the Pavilion of Turkey at the International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia. She writes regularly for the bimonthly magazine Sanat Dünyamız. Çağlayan holds a BA in Arts and Cultural Management from Istanbul Bilgi University and completed an Erasmus exchange program at NABA, Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti in Milan.


Raphael Daibert (he/him) is a Brazilian curator, artist, and researcher based in Berlin. He holds a Master's in Art Praxis from the Dutch Art Institute (2018-2020). He is a founding member of (2013-2018), an artist-run cultural platform in the centre of São Paulo. He is part of the project Third Space, an artistic-pedagogical project founded as part of "Gruppendynamik - Der Blaue Reiter und Kollektive der Moderne" at the Lenbachhaus. His practice mainly focuses on collective anti-hegemonic art projects that attempt to combat the existing forces of oppression. Daibert is currently a PhD student and research assistant at Leuphana University Lüneburg.                                                                   


Luise Leon Elbern (she/her) is an architect and urban designer, who studied at Universidade de São Paulo and at Technical University Munich. In addition to her work as an architect and planner, she has been working as research assistant at TUM and was exhibition mediator at the German Pavilion at the Biennale di Venezia in 2018. In 2021, Luise was an INITIAL scholarship holder at the Akademie der Künste. She is currently studying Art in Context at UdK and is also a co-founder of the multidisciplinary collective CollColl e.V., which pursues interventions and participatory sites in public space. They have been part of IBA Thüringen, IBA Stuttgart and have been invited to the Eco Solidarity Fair by the Goethe-Institut NYC.     


Eirini Fountedaki (she/her) is a curator and writer based in Berlin and Athens. She co-curated the film- screening series Residing in the Borderlands at SAVVY Contemporary—The Laboratory of Form- Ideas (2019-2020), which intended to create a new cartography of Berlin through diasporic perspectives. She is the co-editor of the publication How does the world breathe now? and has co-curated for exhibitions and festivals such as 15th Forum Expanded, Berlinale and London Short Film Festival (2020). She holds an MA in Contemporary Art Theory (Goldsmiths, University of London) and is currently a curatorial fellow of ARTWORKS (Athens). As SAHA Studio's Curatorial Fellow (2022), she researched the intersection of activism and feminism in Istanbul, where she pursued her research on feminist artistic practices in the Mediterranean region.


Viviane Tabach (she/her) is a Brazilian curator and art mediator based in Berlin. Her work centers on educational methods within curatorial and artistic practices. Viviane’s research delves into what makes art institutions effective learning spaces and how the public can be better integrated into this context. She has co-founded and co-directed the art space Casa Aberta in São Paulo, where she organized transdisciplinary projects that integrated music, dance, visual arts, and other forms of expression. She was an art mediator (sobat) for documenta fifteen (2022). She is an MA student in Art in Context at UdK and has a postgraduate degree in Art: Criticism and Curatorship from Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo and a Teaching Practice and BA of Visual Arts from the Instituto de Artes da Universidade Estadual Paulista.                                       


Sarnt Utamachote(they/them) is a filmmaker and curator. They are a co-founder of collective un.thai.tled, through which they curated un.thai.tled Film Festival Berlin (2019-) as well as Beyond the kitchen: Stories from the Thai Park (2020). Their video installation I Am Not Your Mother was officially exhibited at the International Film Festival Rotterdam and nominated for R.D. Pestonji Award for Best Thai Short Film at Thai Short Film and Video Festival Bangkok 2020. They are the 2020 recipient of Queer Short FIlm Fund from Xposed Queer Film Festival Berlin.                                                                        


Affection & Infection
(Publishing Residency)
Lothringer 13 lokal
Upcoming: September-October 2024

Image (right) Lothringer 13 lokal - Fenster zur Straße © Constanza Meléndez
Cruising Curators is invited to the autumn 2024 publishing residency of Lothringer 13 lokal to curate a public program and a final publication expanding onto their long-term investigation on Affection & Infection.

Affection & Infection focuses on urban experiences and the sense of displacement, aiming to contribute substantively to the public discourse concerning contact, kinship, filth, and intimacy. It tackles societal “norms” and advocates for radical or nuanced shifts in comprehending the social and political implications of cleanliness and dirtiness.

During their temporary basis at Lothringer 13 lokal, Cruising Curators will reconfigure the space into an open-door intimacy research center, hosting informal gatherings and screenings. The program will culminate in a multilingual zine (featuring German, English, Turkish, Thai, and Portuguese) accessible in both print and online formats.
Grounding the Urban Commons
as part of Sommerfest am Haus der Statistik
in collaboration with Co-Making Matters

Friday, 21 July 2023, 17-19h
Street Kitchen Otto, Haus der Statistik

Image (right) © Raquel-Gomez
The workshop Grounding the Urban Commons draws upon Stavros Stavrides' book, "Common Space: The City as Commons (In Common)” (2016), as its foundational framework and contemplates the notion that urban spaces should be considered shared resources and public assets accessible to everyone.
        The programme comprises multiple activities, including a reading session featuring selected excerpts from the book and collective spatial exercises around the vicinity of Haus der Statistik. Participants are encouraged to bring their own references and materials related to the various dimensions of the commons.
        As the workshop nears its conclusion, the intention is to create an ephemeral installation that encapsulates the workshop process, bringing together printed materials from the book, discovered objects from the surrounding area, participants' notes, and other creative possibilities.
        Collaboratively developed by Co-Making Matters and Cruising Curators, this workshop represents a collective endeavour aimed at exploring and engaging with the concept of the commons in space. The working group for this project consists of Viviane Tabach and Eirini Fountedaki.