Post-Learning Lab Reflections

Hello all,

It’s been quite a while since my last blog post! A lot has has been happening here in London, but I just wanted to take a moment to reflect that it’s been a year since the Learning Lab. One year since I first left the United States and came to London. Oh, and what a year it has been!

For anyone reading the blog that doesn’t know, the Learning Lab was a short project that Matryoshka Haus ran for a week last summer in partnership with Bent Tree Bible Fellowship, an evangelical church in Dallas. The goal of the Learning Lab was essentially to share Matryoshka Haus knowledge and experience about postmodern culture, while also conveying the core values that make Matryoshka Haus flow and function as an organisation and community. I was one of the fourteen Americans that came over as a member of the Bent Tree team.

Learning Lab, one year ago.

Learning Lab, one year ago.

Looking back on the past year, I can hardly believe how much my life has changed. I originally came over to the UK having almost no idea what to expect, and now I’m living in London and am a part of Matryoshka Haus. I mean, I can still remember deciding to come do an internship, and still not really fully understanding how Matryoshka Haus works off paper. The irony is that even though I now understand how everything works, in the process of getting there I’m no longer sure I can accurately and concisely explain it to another person… That’ll be an exercise for another blog post!

But in comparison to other years of my life, it seems like a disproportionately large amount has happened since the Learning Lab. When I think back to who was with me on the Learning Lab and where we all were at that time, it feels like it was ages and ages ago, even though not that much time has actually passed. So while I could talk about how much the Learning Lab as a week-long experience has influenced my life, that blog post feels like it’s about ten months too late, given how much has happened since then. Really the Learning Lab served me more as a kind of launch pad for growth in the past year, also obviously leading into my internship with Matryoshka Haus.

For one, the experience of moving to London and being a part of Matryoshka Haus has really helped me grow in my faith & walk with God. Obviously the act of trying to establish myself in a new city/country is cause for change in and of itself, but I’ve definitely had to review how I value everything compared to the States – most notably with respect to church and the community that is Matryoshka Haus London. By far one of the best things about my time in London has been getting to know all the awesome people from Matryoshka Haus, whether that is during a community meal, over coffee, or during a project meeting. I also love how I’ve been able to apply my abilities & passions to Matryoshka Haus projects like the Transformational Index, given how the field of interactive media is so narrow and broad at the same time.

Community Meal

Overall, much like trying to explain Matryoshka Haus, talking about my time in London on the blog is equally as difficult. I feel I am either radically understating the breadth and depth of what goes on, or I’m rambling and the meaning of what I’m saying is somehow 90% lost.  Hopefully one of our next projects will change all that! 🙂

More to come soon™

Brenden