About the academy

The Academy for Urban Astronauts investigates how earthlings may learn to live as space travellers – with a view of the stars and insight into the vulnerability of our own planet. Because, besides being harried city dwellers, we are also cosmonauts, circling a star in the vast darkness.

The academy is inspired by the overview effect that astronauts experience when they see the Earth from space. For astronauts, the view of our vulnerable living planet in the immense black emptiness coincides with the realisation that they are inseparably bound to this place in a fundamental way.

A question that concerns the academy is: How can we, living in the modern urban condition, bring nature and the cosmos back into view? How can we emerge from our urban womb and realise that we are also passengers on spaceship Earth.

The academy publishes and organizes night walks and workshops. It is a poetic, activist and bridge-building project that combines sustainability and the search for meaning in cultural programming and urban innovation.

The Academy for Urban Astronauts is a multidisciplinary project by writer and theatre maker Marjolijn van Heemstra and futurology studio Monnik.

More information
Photos of several ASA activities.
— Follow us on our Faceboook page.
More information and movies about the Overview Effect.

Want to know more, invite us or collaborate? Get in touch with info@monnik.org and/or info@marjolijnvanheemstra.nl

Our projects

Stadsastronaut / Urban Astronaut (theatre show)
In theatres  20 Feb - 28 Apr. 2019

Stadsastronaut is the report of a do-it-yourself astronaut, looking for the extraordinary in the ordinary. Bringing together ideal and reality in a plea that carefully calls for more faith in the future. For ourselves, but most of all for those still to come. 

— More information, dates and tickets.
— More information info@marjolijnvanheemstra.nl

Nightlab (design research)

Nightlab is an interdisciplinary research that investigates how we can regain a view of the galaxy in our urban environments. Currently light polution is depriving us of this view, while also damaging ecological, animal and human welfare. The research will eventually lead to a Manual for a Darkened City.
We talk more about it in this podcast. 
— Contact us at info@monnik.org

Introductory course Urban Astronaut

The introductory course Urban Astronaut is a theatrical lecture. In the span of one hour, Monnik and Marjolijn van Heemstra bring along the audience to delve into the question: how to transcend our daily reality by learning to see and think as an astronaut? How can you think about the future, while having your feet on solid ground, anchored in the here and now, and simultaneously have your head between the stars? The introductory course Urban Astronaut is designed as a collective trip from an outward to an inward perspective.
More information in this booklet.
— Get in touch with info@monnik.org and/or info@marjolijnvanheemstra.nl