OPENHOUSE Residency : Ownership Is Inclusion and Our 2023 Focus Areas

October 17, 2022
The impact of Black and Brown people and the use and creation of technology is only now being unearthed.

The impact of Black and Brown people and the use and creation of technology is only now being unearthed. The closer we look, the more we can see how the United States—and the world—have benefited tremendously from new technologies, scientific breakthroughs, and artistic and creative products invented by Black and Brown people. 

We see it in through enslaved people who brought with them a wealth of technological know-how and ways of doing things that they used to adapt to their new surroundings in the United States. 

In how the Indigenous people of America made it possible for colonizers to fish in marshy water through the unique architecture of canoes. 

We see it again during the Reconstruction era when the number of patents for black laborers, such as mechanics, blacksmiths, homemakers, and farmworkers, increased dramatically following the Civil War. 

Black and Brown people have always had an immediate impact on the technology around them, utilizing ancient talents, establishing new ones, and reshaping and changing the character of others. 

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For them, creation and design were not only a way to share their knowledge, experience, culture, and skill. In captivity and unimaginable oppression, “inventiveness was agency, a means of taking as much control of one’s destiny as possible*.” 

And while our ideas and labor have been used to build exponential wealth across the centuries of American history. For too long, we have been denied equal access to own our ideas, the ability to cultivate and scale solutions that prioritize our communities, and capture the full economic and cultural potential of our ideas and labor.  

Openhouse Residency is part solutions labs and part support program that creates a safe, nurturing environment for Black and Brown researchers and founders to turn ideas into realized solutions and ventures through product development, business design, healing, and human and financial resources.

And similarly to those before us, we see design and inventiveness as a way to assert our agency. We also work every day to build thoughtful products designed to reallocate time, social, financial, and health wealth to Black and Brown people in their everyday lives. 

We design with a deep belief in a world that exists for US.

And we invite you to build it with us.