Louis Volont – Shapeshifting: The Social Production of Common Space

Louis Volont (1989) is a PhD researcher in urban sociology, active within ARIA (Antwerp Research Institute for the Arts) and CCQO (Culture Commons Quest Office). He currently completes his PhD entitled “Shapeshifting: The Social Production of Common Space”. Bridging the theoretical field of the commons and the practical field of architecture, the latter project sets out to uncover socio-spatial tactics within commons-based ‘urban praxis’.

Previously, as a research fellow at SMart Belgium, he has worked and published on topics such as career paths of artists/creative professionals, sustainable creativity and ‘third places’. His general research interests currently relate to: spatial commons, utopia and the social production of space.


– Volont, L. (2019). DIY urbanism and the lens of the commons: observations from Spain. Forthcoming in City & Community.

– Gielen, P., Volont, L. & Van Andel, W. (2019). Creativity under pressure: the effects of de-institutionalization and marketization on creative labour. Forthcoming in Art & Identity Policies.

– Van Andel, W. & Volont, L. (2018). Blockchain: tragedy in cyberspace? How the commoner could benefit from the free-rider. In N. Dockx & P. Gielen (Eds.), Commonism: A New Aesthetic of the Real, pp. 237-249. Amsterdam: Valiz.

– Volont, L. (2018). Who steals the goose from off the common? An interview with Peter Linebaugh. In N. Dockx & P. Gielen (Eds.), Commonism: A New Aesthetic of the Real, pp. 315-327. Amsterdam: Valiz.

– Volont, L. (2016). An uncommon sociology of the common: elucidation, review & agenda for research. Secessio: Imagination & Experience after Modernity, 12.

– De Brabandere, A., Burton, R., de Ghellink, Q., Rajabaly, H. & Volont, L. (2015). Tiers-lieux, ateliers partagés d’artistes & coworking in Belgium. Brussels: SMartBe.

– Volont, L. & Dujardin, A. (2014). De start van een loopbaan als kunstenaar/creatieve professional: een sinecure? Definitie, determinanten, motieven. In A. De Brabandere & J. De Boe (Eds.), Starten in een Creatieve Loopbaan (pp. 18-33). Leuven: Lannoo.

Lectures & Conferences

– Volont, L. (2018). The commons in urban praxis. Lecture given at Transurban: The City as A Laboratory for Creative Practices, September 20th, Antwerp, BE.

– Volont, L. (2018). De-fetishize! From art-as-commodity to art-as-commons. Lecture given at SOTA State of the Arts Annual Camp on Fair Practice, September 1st & 2nd, Brussels.

– Volont, L. (2017). “We don’t construct objects, we construct communities”. Framing Spanish DIY urbanism through the lens of the commons. Paper presented at Rethinking Urban Global Justice: An International Academic Conference for Critical Urban Studies (RC21), September 11th-13th, Leeds, UK.

– Volont, L. (2017). From the white cube to the concrete metropolis. Iconoclash in Antwerp & Berlin. Paper presented at Framing Street Art: Cross-Disciplinary International Conference, June 8th-9th, Nice, France.

– Volont, L. (2017). The city as a commons. Guerrilla architecture in Madrid. Paper presented at Traders Summer School No. 1: Participatory Art and Design and the Public Space, March 28th, Hasselt, Z33.

– Volont, L. & Gielen, P. (2017). ZZP’er: vrij of vogelvrij? Lecture given at Hoe Vrij is de ZZP’er in de Kunsten?, March 8th. Amsterdam: de Balie.