The Office of Rules and Norms  

Exploring the role of art in revealing and challenging existing rules

2019 –

Concordia University – Faculty of Fine Arts
Thomson Family Foundation

The Office of Rules and Norms (ORN) is an arts-based transdisciplinary studio headquartered in the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia University. The Office engages with regulations, the rule of law, cultural norms and market standards. These engagements reveal, comprehend, play with, subvert, and transcend current ways of understanding and acting in relation to regulatory forces in order to make room for more equitable alternatives. In its attempts to query legal and behavioural urban infrastructures, the ORN specifically deploys art and design practice, culture, and methods along three axes:

  • Art as Subversion | Intervening in grey areas of regulation
  • Art as Pedagogy | Making public various forces and forms of influence
  • Art as Decision-Making | Reorienting modes of knowing and deliberating

Initial projects carried out in collaboration with Concordia University’s Faculty of Fine Arts focused on grey areas of the building code, socially-biased regulations, the voices of future generations and real estate speculation. It helped generate initiatives such as:

  1. Excess and the City: A seminar that unpacks the housing crisis using arts-based practice.
  2. Shock Value: A fellowship for students from Excess and the City to realize their class projects, resulting in a series of urban interventions.
  3. Inviting Future Generations into Present Negotiations: A digital publication and workshop that investigates the role of art and philosophy for long-term thinking.

For more information, visit the website.︎
Facebook page︎

All Projects ︎
We’re a distributed team with presence around the world.

Dark Matter Laboratories B.V.
Pakhuis de Zwijger
Piet Heinkade 181K
1019 HC Amsterdam

KvK number: 75174405

United Kingdom
Dark Matter Laboratories Limited
217 Mare Street
London, E8 3QE

Company number: 13294211

Laboratoires de Matière sombre / Dark Matter LabsOrganisation à but non-lucratif canadien / Canadian not-for-profit 
6107 Av. de Monkland
Montréal, Québec
H4A 1H5

Numéro de l'organisation / Corporation number: 1196376-7

South Korea
주식회사 다크매터랩스코리아 / Dark Matter Labs Korea Co., Ltd 
#301, Pyeongtaek 5-ro 20beon-gil 8,
Pyeongtaek-si, Gyeonggi-do, 17902

경기도 평택시 평택5로 20번길 8, 301호, 우편번호 17902
사업자등록증: 808-88-01717

Mörk Materia Laboratoriet AB / Dark Matter Labs Sweden
Amiralsgatan 76 
21437, Malmö

Registration number: 559305-1047