Learning From Kilburn is a tiny experimental university with its curriculum rooted in Kilburn, NW6. The university uses the high road and its hinterland as a campus, occupying a number of locations for classes initially running from October 2013 to March 2014. Weekly classes study what makes Kilburn what it is, led by a range of artists, architects, writers and thinkers. Each class is framed around a question, looking at one thing at a time in order to understand Kilburn as a whole. The university wants to know what Kilburn looks like, where it starts and finishes, how money works in Kilburn, whether Kilburn even exists, where Kilburn is going. Learning From Kilburn is aimed at local people, but free of charge for anyone to attend. Learning From Kilburn is a Spacemakers project, directed by Tom Keeley in collaboration with OK-RM and Pernilla Ohrstedt Studio, and funded by the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden.
Client: London Boroughs of Brent and Camden
Facilitators: Tom Keeley, Nazima Kadir, Verity-Jane Keefe, Charles Davies, Suzanne Hall, Richard Wentworth, David Tross, the Mass Observation Archive, Hannah Neate, Preston is my Paris, UCL Urban Laboratory.
Research Question: At a time when formal education is becoming prohibitively expensive for many, Learning From Kilburn asks if there is a significant amount to be learnt right on your doorstep, both in the physical environment that surrounds you, and in the knowledge contained in the minds of people in the area. The university presents an alternative educational model, elevating the everyday of Kilburn to something worthy of study. The university is about looking closely at ourselves and our surroundings, the physical, historical, political and social, in order to reach potential futures for Kilburn. The alumni, data and research can inform future decision making in the area.