Prof. Dr. Yvonne Schmidt
Prof. Dr. Yvonne Schmidt Dozentin
Hochschule der Künste Bern
Principal Investigator & Head of SNSF-research project "Aesthetics of the Im/Mobile"
Principal Investigator & Head of SNSF-research project "EcoArtLab. Relational Encounters between the Arts and Climate Research"
Responsible for the research field "Art Education" (Kunstvermittlung) at the Institute for Practices and Theories in the Arts
Sustainability in the Arts
Transdisciplinary collaboration between arts and sciences
Performance and Disability
Ecological Arts & Environmental Humanities
Digital Performance / Theatre / Dance
Art Education / Mediation
Amateur theatre practices
3rd cycle education in the arts
- Yvonne Schmidt, Dr. phil., is responsible for the research field Art Education at the Institute for the Practices and Theories in the Arts at HKB. She is currently the principal investigator of the SNSF-funded research projects "Aesthetics of the Im/Mobile" (2022-2026) and "EcoArtLab" (2023-2027). She is also Head of the 3rd Cycle (PEERS Program for emerging artistic researchers and PhD in Performing Arts and Film), a Senior Lecturer/Researcher and Deputy Head at the Institute for the Performing Arts and Film at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK).
She has initiated, facilitated and led various research projects, networks and encounters which foster a dialogue between arts, academia, and society. Having a background in theatre/performance research, the focus lies in in multidisciplinary, practice-based research that speaks both to scholars and practitioners. In collaboration with artists and researchers from different fields, her work is about expanding practices and forms of knowledge genesis in the arts and sciences.
Currently, she is the initiator and head of EcoArtLab, a transdisciplinary think and do tank, which develops formats in collaboration between artistic researchers, scientists, and the public by developing and testing innovative approaches to ecological issues. Since 2022 she is the Principal Investigator of the SNSF-research project "Aesthetics of the Im/Mobile" at the Institute for Practices and Theories in the Arts at the Bern University of the Arts (HKB), which explores hybrid/digital curatorial practices and artistic approaches to im/mobility in order to further develop sustainable forms of dissemination, mediation and accessibility in the performing arts.
The practice-based SNSF research project "Dis/Ability on Stage" (2015-2019) at Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK) in collaboration with Theater HORA and other festivals and art schools/universities in various Swiss language regions, explored rehearsal practices, hierarchies and audience response formats in inclusive theater and dance. The findings were made available to various target groups in the form of a hybrid media publication in easy language, a research film and various peer-reviewed journal articles. The stage laboratory with students in dance and theater education was a pioneering project to develop a first inclusive teaching format in dance and theatre eduction at Swiss art schools. The stage lab "Dis/Ability on Stage" (2016/17) was awarded the Credit Suisse Best Teaching Award and invited to different festivals, such as the Swiss Theatre Encounter in Lugano, the wildwuchs Festival in Basel, and the IntregART symposium at Tanzhaus Zurich.
Other interests include amateur or community theatre practices (such as Swiss outdoor theatre), artistic research in 3rd cycle education, arts mediation, participatory creation processes, and institutional transformation.
She is also the Co-President of the Swiss Association for Theatre Studies (SGTK), co-editor of MIMOS - Swiss Yearbook of Performing Arts (in 4 languages) and until 2020 the co-founder and convener of the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR) Working Group "Performance and Disability", the largest network of scholars and artists in this field. She is also regularly invited as a speaker to symposiums and workshops both in academic and artistic contexts, and teaches regularly at art schools and universities, mostly at MA and third cycle level.
Yvonne Schmidt studied theatre and dance studies and comparative literature in Mainz, Paris, and Bern and holds a PhD in theatre studies from the University of Bern (2013). Before and during her university studies she gained several years of experience in culture journalism and media, and worked for different festivals and theatres (2004-2006 Biennale New Plays from Europe, 2011-2015 No Limits Festival Berlin etc.). She was awarded a SNSF-fellowship at the University of Illinois at Chicago, "Program on Disability Arts, Culture, and Humanities" (head: Carrie Sandahl). In 2015 she was a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Bern, Institute for Theater Studies, and in 2018 a Research Fellow at the Departement of Theatre and Film at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver.
- 2001-2004 Undergraduate studies in theatre studies and comparative literature Johannes-Gutenberg Universität Mainz
- 2004-2005 ERASMUS exchange student Université de La Sorbonne Nouvelle (Paris 3)
- 2006-2008 Master of Arts in Theatre and Dance Studies Universität Bern
- 2008-2013 Dr. phil. in Theatre Studies Universität Bern
Co-President of the Swiss Association for Theatre Research (SGTK): www.mimos.ch
International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR), Co-convener & founder of the "Performance and Disability Working Group" (till 2020)
Schweizerische Akademische Gesellschaft für Umweltforschung (saguf)
Society for Artistic Research (SAR)
DFG-network "Dis/Ability and Digital Media"
The Performance and Disability Working Group of the International Federation for Theatre Research are pleased to announce the New Scholars Award in Disability Performance. This award honours esteemed senior researcher Yvonne Schmidt, co-founder of our working group and long-serving convenor (2011-2020). As part of our group's ongoing commitment to proactively support attendance for participants, especially disabled artists/scholars, the Award primarily recognises new scholars from underrepresented parts of the world working in the field of disability performance.