Architecture has always been intimately intertwined with its social, political, and economic contexts; major events in world history have had correspondingly dramatic effects on the discipline. The Great Depression, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and Hurricane Katrina, for example, were all catalysts for architectural response and resulted in a diversification of the architect’s portfolio. Yet far too often, architects simply react to changes in the world, rather than serving as agents of change themselves.
Perspecta: The Yale Architectural Journal is a student-edited peer-reviewed academic journal published by the MIT Press and Yale School of Architecture, Yale University since 1952.
This issue, Perspecta 45: Agency – edited by Kurt Evans, Iben Falconer & Ian Mills; designed by Zak Jensen & Mylinh Trieu Nguyen – takes a broader view, using the concept of agency to explore the future of architecture. The retreat from liability, the barricade of theory, and the silos of specialization have generated a field that is risk-averse and reactive, rather than bold and active. Instead of assuming that architects can only throw up their hands in despair, the editors of this issue of Perspecta invite them to roll up their sleeves and get to work.
Prominent architects, scholars, and artists investigate how architects can become agents for change within their own discipline and in the world at large.
Contributors include Eeva-Liisa Pelkonen, Nader Tehrani, Ines Weizman, Jaime Lerner, Urban-Think Tank, Stefano Boeri, Peter Eisenman, Michael Osman, Darryl Collins, Vann Molyvann, Enrique Ramirez, Rania Ghosn, Victor van der Chijs, Bjarke Ingels, Jan Kempenaers, Andrew Shanken, Keller Easterling, Timur Galen, Perspecta 45 & Pierluigi Serraino, Thomas Auer, Joshua Vanwyck & Erik Olsen, Preston Scott Cohen, and Ariane Lourie Harrison.
Common Room is an architectural practice, publishing imprint, exhibition space, and collaborative platform based in New York City and Brussels. Common Room is comprised of architects Lars Fischer, Todd Rouhe and Maria Ibañez, and graphic designer Geoff Han.
Offprint Paris is an Art Publishing Fair focused on emerging practices in Art.
“We give special attention to the evolution of publishing/curating from traditional “spaces” (catalogues, artists books, photobooks, newspapers, but also museums and schools) towards new spaces and artists organizations (independent publishing, self publishing strategies, websites, blogs, social networks, activism, non institutional activities…).
We consider that the topic of “Publishing” can offer a stimulating hermeneutic to analyse the structure and development of the contemporary art world in a context of digitalization of cultures.”
15–18 November 2012
École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts, Paris
The future of architecture is a participatory book project which tries to provide an insight into the future role of architecture. It is an attempt to supply an insight into the question, “What is the future of architecture?”.
Every architectural attempt starts by making a representation of an imaginative situation or design, which will happen, or could happen in the future. In many cases an architectural design remains a future plan, and in times of economical and political crisis, the question of what comes next, gains relevance. So, while architects shape the future, this book is concerning about the future of architecture.
Zak Kyes Working With… brings together a range of works by graphic designer Zak Kyes, as well as works by a host of collaborators that includes architects, artists, writers, curators, editors, and graphic designers, presenting contemporary graphic design as a practice that mediates, and is mediated by, its allied disciplines.
The book highlights the designer’s relations with partners, clients, and institutions, and the creative potential of these collaborations to evolve traditional understandings of graphic design, art, and architecture.
With contributions by Can Altay, Charles Arsène-Henry, Shumon Basar, Richard Birkett, Andrew Blauvelt, Edward Bottoms, Wayne Daly, Jesko Fezer, Joseph Grigely, Nikolaus Hirsch, Maria Lind, Markus Miessen, Michel Müller, Radim Peško, Barbara Steiner.
©William Wegman, Reading Two Books
Le Corbusier (1887-1965) souhaitait apporter à ses contemporains une nouvelle façon de penser à la fois l’habitat, l’urbanisme et l’art: proposer des conditions de vie nouvelles pour un homme nouveau.
La photographie est bien sûr à la base de la diffusion de son oeuvre architecturale, mais l’exposition Construire l’image: Le Corbusier et la photographie ne se limite pas à la représentation photographique des réalisations de Le Corbusier. Dans son cas, la photographie mérite en effet d’être envisagée dans une perspective bien plus large : il est ici question de la photographie autant comme outil de représentation, de promotion ou de diffusion que comme moyen de recherche artistique et plastique.
Durant toute sa vie, Le Corbusier a fait de l’image des usages différenciés. Ses voyages ont été pour lui l’occasion de réunir de nombreux documents qu’il a utilisés dans son travail d’architecte, d’urbaniste, de théoricien et de plasticien. Il a puisé dans ce vaste répertoire iconographique pour illustrer ses écrits et ses expositions, développant des stratégies de communication innovantes. Il a supervisé la documentation de ses ouvres avec un œil exigeant et aiguisé, qui en fait parfois un véritable co-auteur de certaines photographies consacrées à son architecture. Par ailleurs, Le Corbusier a lui-même expérimenté cadrages et jeux de lumière dans son travail photographique personnel, encore largement inédit. La découverte récente de milliers de négatifs permet ainsi de restituer son processus créatif et de le confronter à sa pratique picturale.
Pour l’architecte, la photographie a ainsi servi à la fois de notes de travail et d’outil de recherche plastique. Au-delà de son propre travail de création, Le Corbusier a aussi été un des premiers à construire consciencieusement et systématiquement son image et celle de son œuvre à travers la photographie, en s’appuyant sur le travail de plusieurs photographes de renom.
jusqu’au 13 janvier 2013
Musée des beaux-arts, La Chaux-de-Fonds
Les Éditions B2, entre autres nées d’une insatisfaction devant l’offre éditoriale en matière d’architecture et d’une bibliothèque spécialisée recelant des trésors anciens et/ou non-traduits, forment une “Galaxie Gutenberg” de poche et entendent édifier un “cabinet de curiosités” architectural, espèces d’espaces rassemblant une infinité de petits univers d’hétérotopies classiques, d’actualités et d’étrangetés…
Pour sa 9ème édition le Salon Light met en scène rencontres et dialogues avec cinquante éditeurs et libraires indépendants, et trois journées de recherches et de performances sur la pratique éditoriale. Les acteurs de la micro-édition occupent un champ d’expérimentation multimodale et se jouent des frontières artistiques, comme des déterminations théoriques. Directement liées aux techniques de création et de diffusion de l’information les plus novatrices, les pratiques éditoriales ouvrent le champ de l’art et de ses frontières : sciences humaines, graphisme, son, poésie… Une nouvelle génération de curateurs s’est constituée sur le modèle de l’éditeur indépendant, qui s’adapte de manière dynamique aux mutations du monde contemporain où les rôles de l’édition (auteur, éditeur, graphiste, collectionneur, photographe, conservateur, libraire, lecteur) sont tour à tour joués par les mêmes. Une nouvelle route de la soie est ainsi empruntée par un nombre grandissant d’acteurs animés du désir de rompre avec un art qui fait du profit et souhaite réinventer un art complexe qui véhicule du savoir et se démarque naturellement du produit de luxe. Le Cneai renouvelle pour le Salon Light#9 la forme du salon en un véritable espace d’exposition des pratiques éditoriales.
19-21 octobre 2012
Palais de Tokyo, Paris
MISS READ 2012 brings together for the fourth time the most important protagonists of artistic book publishing. With the artist book as an autonomous artistic work, artists use the linearity of the book as medium to tell visual stories, generate archives, depict collections, present research results, or even quite intentionally practice book piracy. The productive collaboration between artist, author, and designer often results in the creation of complex books that also enable a fresh perspective on the art.
September 14-16, 2012
abc art berlin contemporary, Berlin
If scale is familiar, the scaleless is unfamiliar.
The fourth issue of Another Pamphlet – Scaleless! – will consider the scaleless; the scaleless representation, the scaleless object, the scaleless process, the scaleless system, the scaleless attitude. Lacking an understandable relationship to something known; a measure, a body, a context – the scaleless resists quantification, challenges comprehension, and destabilizes conventions.
Scale is inherent in the experience of perception, and like all perceptual properties it is dynamic; objects we see oscillate between having ‘a sense of scale’ and being ‘out of scale’. Scale is paradoxically both persistent and fleeting, both objective and subjective.
Throughout the history of aesthetic practice, scale has been variously deployed as an operative design strategy – emphasizing scale to provide a stabilizing force from which to measure, repurposing ideas at different scales to challenge expectations, or deliberately denying scale to encourage multiple readings. Scale is a fundamental issue for architecture; it links the process of design to the process of building, leverages the systems of proportion, orders part to whole, and allows buildings to relate to one another. However, recent developments in modeling tools (the scalelessness of digital space), fabrication (the increasingly seamless translation of this scaleless digital space into physical space), and the homogenizing pressures of globalization (the loss of local context), have upset these traditional registers, leaving the status of scale increasingly uncertain and urgently in need of reformulation.
This issue suggests an emerging atmosphere of the scaleless; cultural, political, economic, material, and aesthetic. We embrace the complex ambiguity of the scaleless, seek out its untapped potential, and ask what is at stake for the discipline of architecture.
Contributions by Benjamin Critton, Julien de Smedt, Isaiah King, Mark Lee, Ryan Neiheiser, Jesse Reiser, Garrett Ricciardi, Julian Rose, Hilary Sample, Sam Stewart-Halevy, Giancarlo Valle, Jesus Vassallo.
Launch, September 13, 6pm
Printed Matter, New York
“What is essential here is the presence of the spirit of dialogue, which is in short, the ability to hold many points of view in suspension, along with a primary interest in the creation of common meaning.” Physicist David Bohm
With this “spirit” in mind, ROLU’s attention is equally paid to thought and content, conception and reality. With their active engagement in a multitude of dialogs, they design like water – mixing ideas from the past, from each other, from memory, and from fantasy. Sampling from these different forms of inspiration, ROLU presents forms that are both familiar and completely new.
In Everything is Always Changing All of the Time, ROLU collaborates with Greek architect Andreas Angelidakis to create ambiguous spaces within space, where the work exists as ‘many points of view in suspension’. Sculptures function as dressers, chairs double as totems, forms serve as screens for video projection all contributing to their own unique dialoged and preserved for participation. Suddenly a Lygia Clark sculpture becomes a chest of drawers and a Helio Oiticica installation turns a chair into a room.
The work is a continuation of ROLU’s ongoing study of questioning when a design begins – is it invented or discovered. The works will be presented on Angeldakis’s Universal Exhibition Walls – which act as dividers, plinths and architectural elements.
September 7 – October 13
Volume Gallery, Chicago
Bookshop Index, a directory of independent art bookshops around the world.
Archizines célèbre le renouveau des publications architecturales alternatives et indépendantes. L’exposition rassemble 60 fanzines, magazines et revues de plus de 20 pays. Editées par des architectes, des artistes et des étudiants, ces publications fournissent de nouvelles plates-formes pour la discussion, la critique et la recherche sur l’espace habité et la pratique de l’architecture. Ils sont un complément important, souvent radical, au discours architectural.
In conjunction with the End of the Year Show 2012, Werkplaats Typografie & ArtEZ Institute of the Arts presents two lectures with Elizabeth Price – an artist who creates video installations incorporating digital moving image, text and music – and Owen Hatherley – a writer on architecture, urbanism and popular culture.
7-8 july, 2012
De Ateliers, Amsterdam
From June to September, Open Field transforms the Walker Art Center’s big, green yard into a cultural commons. The space is designed in the spirit of the “gift economy,” to explore what happens when people get together to share and exchange skills and interests, to create something new, or delve into the unknown.
For their residency (July 17-29), ROLU have developed a series of hands-on public activities organized around the ideas and people that have influenced them, as well as their wide-ranging interests: landscape and architectural design, urban planning, furniture design, modern and contemporary art history, collaborative public art, and more.
ROLU is an experimental design studio located in Minneapolis that’s focused on exploring the relationship between life, our surroundings and the objects and ideas that fill those spaces. Its practice was founded and continues to have a strong connection to landscape design but also extends to furniture design and collaborative architectural projects as well as urban planning work and public art.
The Aspen Complex documents Martin Beck’s exhibition which draws on the events of the 1970 International Design Conference in Aspen (IDCA) and the development of the Aspen Movie Map to form a visual environment that reflects the interrelations between art, architecture, design, ecology, and social movements. The book also brings together yet unpublished archival material and new research.
The 1970 IDCA marked a turning point in design thinking. The conference’s theme, “Environment by Design”, brought together venerable figures of modern design in the United States, including Eliot Noyes, George Nelson, and Saul Bass; environmental collectives and activist architects from Berkeley such as the Environmental Action Group, Sim Van der Ryn, and Ant Farm; as well as a group of French designers and sociologists, among them Jean Aubert, Lionel Schein, and Jean Baudrillard. The conference quickly escalated into a site of unresolvable conflict about communication formats and the potential role of design for environmental practices in a rapidly changing society.
The ensuing decade heralded the development of an interactive navigation system, which used the same Colorado resort town as its test site. The Aspen Movie Map – initiated by MIT’s Architecture Machine Group (the predecessor to the Media Lab) and partially funded by the US Department of Defense – is an image-based surrogate travel system using footage filmed in Aspen. Meant to prepare users for quick orientation in places they have never been to, the Aspen Movie Map was a seminal prototype for today’s military and consumer navigation systems.
Book launch & film screening
June 20 2012, 7pm
Alex Coles is the author of The Transdisciplinary Studio, a study of the studio models of artists and designers including Jorge Pardo, Konstantin Grcic, Olafur Eliasson, and Åbäke; and Vito Acconci, Gui Bonsiepe, James Clifford, Dexter Sinister, Martino Gamper, Ryan Gander, Caroline Jones, Ronald Jones, Maria Lind, Alessandro Mendini, Rick Poynor, and Andrea Zittel. The book posits that artists and designers are now defined not by their discipline but by the fluidity with which their practices move between them.
The Transdisciplinary Studio is the first volume of a series of books by Alex Coles on the expanded studio model and contemporary praxis.
ARCHIZINES curator Elias Redstone and [bracket] editor Mason White discuss issues in architectural publishing today including digital media, emerging forms of editorship, publication lifecycles, the role of graphics, and distribution networks.
The event will be streamed live.
May 17, 2012, 7pm
Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal
The Solution series invites authors to develop an abundance of compact and original ideas for countries and regions, contradicting the widely held assumption that after the end of socialism, human advancement is only possible technologically or requires a yet-to-be-established world order. In Solution 9: The Great Pyramid, Niermann writes: “When I told Rem Koolhaas about my title idea for the book series, he seemed earnestly alarmed. ‘Solution’ is a word he never uses. He demonstrated how his hand automatically begins to shake as soon as he even wants to write it.”
May 25 – June 16, 2012