Architectural practice is highly regulated, either explicitly through regulation, or implicitly through unwritten standards. But should we always follow the rules? Standards of comfort, of architectural conservation, of ecological performance: what do these standards actually represent? What kinds of histories, narratives or typologies do they produce or impose? This lecture series takes disobedience as a starting point. What kinds of architectures are made possible when we decide to disobey? How do we enact disobedience as a method for designing new ways of thinking about dwelling? When we think of standards, policies, histories or typologies as fictions? A series of guest speakers will reflect on how disobedience can lead to enticing methods to produce, conserve or imagine architectures.
28/9/22, 12:30, Design in Dialogue Lab (ONA ground floor)
Vera Sacchetti (Lisbon, 1983) is a Basel-based design critic and curator. She specializes in contemporary design and architecture and serves in a variety of curatorial, research and editorial roles. She is currently program coordinator of the multidisciplinary research initiative Driving the Human: Seven Prototypes for Eco-social Renewal (2020-2023), which supports transdisciplinary research on sustainable futures; and co-initiator of the Design and Democracy platform (2020–), which maps the intersections and overlaps between design and democratic systems and practices. Sacchetti teaches at HEAD Geneva, and in 2020 joined the Federal Design Commission of Switzerland.
12/10/22, 3 pm, on zoom (https://ethz.zoom.us/j/7815469081) and screened in Design in Dialogue Lab (ONA ground floor)
Architect, editor, and curator Giovanna Borasi joined the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) in 2005, first as Curator of Contemporary Architecture (2005-10), then as Chief Curator (2014-19). She has been the Director of the CCA since 2020. Borasi’s work explores alternative ways of practicing and evaluating architecture, considering the impact of contemporary environmental, political and social issues on urbanism and the built environment.
9/11/22, 2 pm, on zoom (https://ethz.zoom.us/j/7815469081) and screened in Design in Dialogue Lab (ONA ground floor)
Charles L. Davis II
Charles L. Davis II is an associate professor of architectural history and criticism at the University of Texas at Austin. He received his PhD in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and has an M.Arch and B.P.S. from the University at Buffalo. His academic research excavates the role of racial identity and race thinking in architectural history and contemporary design culture. Charles is co-editor of Race and Modern Architecture (University of Pittsburgh, 2020) and Building Character: The Racial Politics of Modern Architectural Style (University of Pittsburgh, 2019), which traces the historical integrations of race and style theory in paradigms of “architectural organicism,” or movements that modeled design on the generative principles of nature.
15/11/22, 12:30, Design in Dialogue Lab (ONA ground floor)
Fabian Tobias Reiner
Fabian Tobias Reiner is an Austrian architect and architectural theorist. He holds an MA in History and Critical Thinking from the Architectural Association in London and an MSc in Architecture from ETH Zurich. For an exchange semester, Fabian Tobias attended the Accademia di Architettura di Mendrisio. He worked for Leth & Gori in Denmark, is now gaining experience as an architect under camponovo baumgartner in Zurich and performs as a periodic reviewer for History and Theory Studies at the AA, both undergraduate and graduate school. In late 2021, Fabian Tobias published his first book «Architectural Comfort–Discovering Conceptions in Modern Viennese Concretisations». He has written for magazines such as «trans» (ETH), «aarchitecture» (AA), «FuZine» (Ljubljana Design Biennial 2020), «blank» (Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna), taught workshops in Ukraine (EASA) and Belgium (IDW at University of Antwerp) and exhibited at venues such as the Accademia di Architettura di Mendrisio and the Museum für Gestaltung, Zurich. The stage is perpetually unfolding.
22/11, 9:00, Studio of Affective Architectures, ONA G23
Pablo Donet & Tanja Reimer
Pablo Donet is a partner at Donet Schäfer Reimer Architekten. From 2017 to 2022, he also worked in teaching at Studio An Fonteyne at ETH Zurich. From 2011 to 2016, he was employed by Caruso St John Architects and from 2009 to 2011 by Staufer & Hasler Architekten. He studied at TU Darmstadt and ETH Zurich. Tanja Reimer is a partner at Donet Schäfer Reimer Architekten. From 2014-19, she conducted research at the Institute of Constructive Design at the ZHAW. She was a freelancer of the architecture magazine werk, bauen + wohnen (2014–18) and received the BSA research scholarship together with Lisa Euler in 2012. From 2011-14 she worked for Boltshauser Architekten and from 2009-11 in the Office for Building Construction of the City of Zurich. She studied at TU Darmstadt and ETH Zurich.
Together with Tim Schäfer they founded Donet Schäfer Reimer Architekten GmbH in 2018. Since 2016, they have been working on joint projects in changing constellations.
What is the political economy of architectural type? What is the complicity between type, finance and urban development? In her research project Cooperative Conditions with Anne Kockelkorn, Susanne Schindler departs from the type of the cooperative, to look at the mutual dependency of the architecture of cooperative housing and its political and economic regulation. By looking at the form of architecture and the city in conjunction with the history of this particular political economy of housing, the research articulates scopes of action for architects today.
Susanne Schindler is an architect and historian focused on the intersection of policy and design in housing. She is co-director of the MAS program in history and theory of architecture at gta, ETH Zurich.
As a kind of archaeology of the present, researcher and cultural worker Diana Bärmann has closely examined the interim uses of the Labitzke site in Zurich: a former paint factory that hosted car repair shops, migrant associations, night clubs, residential communities, a mosque, and even a brothel for about 25 years. A unique place that became a social laboratory for new forms of coexistence. Diana Bärmann tells the area's story from the inside, as she was a resident of the site herself.
Diana Bärmann is a researcher and cultural worker. In 2021 she published the book Labitzke Farben – Archäologische Untersuchung einer Stadtutopie with Hochparterre.
How to relate type to use, and trace it back to the user? For architect Anne Lacaton “the concept of inhabiting is very important. It doesn’t only relate to housing: in French, ‘habiter’ means the state of being somewhere: space is whatever its use is. Starting from this principle, even though our projects have distinct programmes, functions and users, they all propose generosity of space, freedom of use, and possibility of appropriation.” In this talk, Anne Lacaton will talk about their proposal for the MAAG Areal.
Anne Lacaton is an architect and professor. She runs the architectural practice Lacaton & Vassal, with Jean-Philippe Vassal, awarded the Pritzker Prize in 2021.
Khensani de Klerk
The value of cities relies on the inhabitation of difference, the cohabitation of multi-layered realities constantly coinciding and interacting. According to architect and planner Khensani de Klerk, precarious living, embodied in precarious and unrecognised types, largely remain relegated to informality and with it, connotations of unreliability, high risk and chaos. However, many of the systems that encode the functioning of these informal types are thoroughly thought out systems that one could argue are even more sophisticated than many types in the formal world, but lack the material quality of those governed by formality. How do we build up coalitions and recognize interdependency between both?
Khensani de Klerk is an architectural researcher and designer from Johannesburg. She is part of the Dept. of the Ongoing at the Chair of Affective Architectures. She is founder and co-director of Matri-Archi(tecture) collective (SA, CH), an editorial contributor at the Architectural Review (UK) and head of research and development at Studio8Fold (UK).
In her provocative PhD research, architect Anna Puigjaner makes a call for kitchenless cities, questioning individualized types of domesticity, and proposing domestic models anchored on collectivity. Puigjaner’s PhD lends from the family hotel typology, a “hybrid that combined the European apartment with the American hotel.” For decades, developers had successfully exploited a loophole in the legal definition distinguishing permanent homes from hotels, which didn’t require food preparation areas to be housed within dwelling units. Cutting out kitchens increased the number and variety of apartments. To Puigjaner this proved felicitous and “led to a greater interdependency between the house and the community, creating stronger social and urban bonds between the domestic and public spheres—without the kitchen, relations between the inhabitants were encouraged.”
Anna Puigjaner is an architect, researcher and associate professor at Columbia GSADD, and co-founder of Barcelona-based MAIO Architects.2/3, 1 pm (@ONA, Studio Chair Affective Architectures)
Nishat Awan’s research focuses on the intersection of geopolitics and space, including questions related to diasporas, migration and border regimes. She is interested in modes of spatial representation, particularly in relation to the digital and the limits of witnessing as a form of ethical engagement with distant places. Currently, she leads the ERC funded project, Topological Atlas, which aims to produce visual counter-geographies of the fragile movements of migrants as they encounter the security apparatus of the border.
In this lecture (of 9 september 2021), entitled Architectures of Displacement (& forms of non-belonging), Nishat Awan explores how to make space for other inhabitations. How can we think architecture beyond building and towards spatial relations? Nishat Awan discusses these issues in relation to displacements, diasporas and migration within and beyond Europe.
Her book, Diasporic Agencies: Mapping the City Otherwise (Routledge, 2016) addressed the subject of how architecture and urbanism can respond to the consequences of increasing migration, including alternative mapping strategies. She has also addressed alternative modes of architectural production in the co-authored book Spatial Agency (Routledge, 2011) and the co edited book Trans-Local-Act (aaa-peprav, 2011).
Philippe Koch works as a political scientist and urban researcher at the Institut Urban Landscape of the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW). He is involved in theoretical and applied research as well as teaching on the interactions between politics and urban space.
In his lecture in situ in Winterthur, he will engage with the politics behind the Swiss claim for densification as a productive urban concept for our cities: what are the arguments, the political agenda's at stake, and how is civil society responding? He will walk us to the Lagerplatz to expand on its history and his ongoing research into the public nature of the square.
In 2021, Philippe Koch co-authored the book Bauen ist Weiterbauen: Lucius Burckhardts (1925–2003) Auseinandersetzung mit Architektur in which he expands the legacy of Lucius Burckhardt from his sociological reflections (for which he is well known) to his (no less important) vision on the role of architecture and urban planning as a medium, and not merely as a mirror of social realities. More specifically the book engages with Burckhardt's concept of weiterbauen as an early affirmation of the importance to consider building as a continuous process.
Afaina De Jong
Architect Afaina de Jong leads AFARAI, an Amsterdam-based architectural agency that specializes in spatial design and strategy. The studio’s aim is to cross the boundaries of the traditional architecture practice by dealing with the existing city with an intersectional and interdisciplinary approach, integrating theory and research with design. As a studio AFARAI considers itself a feminist practice that encourages change on social and spatial issues and that accommodate differences.
In 2021, Afaina de Jong presented at the Dutch pavilion of the Venice Architecture Biennale, responding to the theme set by curator Hashim Sarkis—“How will we live together?”—with the counter-question: “Who is we?” She presented Space of Other, a performative space using public dialogues to engage with other values, languages, and spatial practices like dance, music and poetry.
4/5, 1 pm (ONA, Design in Dialogue Lab)
TEN is a Zurich and Belgrade based architecture studio formed in 2019, working on the principle that value is an outcome of design effort, and aims to conceive, explore and produce ideas that both state and expand upon emerging practices in the built environment. The focus lies on producing new realities, by means of buildings, urban proposals, algorithmic design, materials research and prototypes with a range of collaborators, institutional partners and private clients. TEN is composed as a record label, providing possibilities for forming interdependent work constellations for each project.