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Developing cognitive skills for artistic research in music

Reflective practice in artistic research is predicated on the repertoire of conceptual models available to the artist – innate, learned and assimilated, conscious, half-formed and obscure. This experimental workshop takes a radical approach to developing cognitive skills for artist-researchers in music. It seeks to encourage development in areas that will support and empower reflective research in all areas of music, through the joy of focussed learning.

Bootcamp from 6. - 10.9.2021 at the Orpheus Instituut,  Ghent, Belgium >>

Structure of the Camp

  • Courses in common learning environment

  • Homework

  • Teachers' consultations and plenary discussion


Critical Reasoning

Marianne Talbot (Oxford University)

The empirical evidence is mounting for the view that we are nowhere near as rational as we think we are. Could it be that we are not actually rational at all? During the sessions we will reflect on what it is to be rational, consider what being rational enables us to do, particularly in our pursuit of musical excellence, and finally we’ll look at how, if we are rational, we might get better at reasoning. More details.

Sixteenth Century Counterpoint

Markus Roth (Folkwang University of the Arts, Essen)

The training of contrapuntal thinking in contexts of Sixteenth-Century Music is a perfect school of combinatory skills and therefore for composition and ‘creative thinking’. The engagement with both musical Practise and Theory can also offer fascinating impulses for our own today’s musical experience and thinking. More details.

Programming in the Arts: Practice and reflection

Magno Caliman (Orpheus Institute, Ghent)

While programming experimental instruments capable of sound generation and manipulation, the fundamentals concepts of computer science – such as functions, variables and control structures – will be presented, discussed, and experimented with. More details.



A rich learning experience to further develop and apply valuable critical thinking skills, counterpoint knowledge and programming to artistic research! The BootCamp was a short but intense experience on the most innovative methodologies and ideas on artistic research. I have been immersed in high level, vigorous training on critical thinking, counterpoint and programming. Professors that tought the courses are notable artists and professors at Institution of higher education. At the end of the BootCamp I feel I have learned new tools and technique to be utilized in my research practice. I have also reinforced my knowledge on the application of critically thinking to my research and the artistic reality around me.
Formal logic, sixteenth-century counterpoint, computer coding: what do they have in common? During RappLab2 I learned that being able to recognize relations between premises and a conclusion, and knowing how to counterpoint four voices, might be activities made of the same material. I highly enjoyed every course, since each lecturer made me disclose a set of competencies that I am now able to use in my research activity. Still, the one I appreciated the most was "Programming in the Arts: Practice and reflection": I couldn't imagine the musical (ad artistic, more generally) possibilities hidden behind what at first glance may seem just a cold, strictly defined set of rules. To sum up, the BootCamp was an extraordinary opportunity to acquire skills in a unique context: the Orpheus reserved to us participants not only great lectures but also the most exquisite hospitality.