As a means of activating architectural theory, and in response to the demands of participants, we have embedded an architectural theory and philosophy seminar into the Urban Occupation workshop and studio. This theory seminar and reading group is open to all participants in the studio and workshop (and please invite along your peers too!). Our aim is to infiltrate the design process being undertaken in the studio and workshop with useful theoretical frameworks. Some of the concepts we will be considering include the psychoanalyst Félix Guattari’s ethcio-aesthetics and his ecosophy; the curator and art critic Nicolas Bourriaud’s relational aesthetics, and his more recent work on the Altermodern exhibition at the Tate Britain; we will also address the ongoing architectural theory debate that posits a new ‘projective’ approach to architectural design against the old, purportedly negative approach of ‘critical’ architectural discourse; we will look at Bruno Latour and ANT (Actor Network Theory) and the relevance of this approach to architecture; and we will read Michel Serres on the quasi-object, from his book, Le Parasite; and so on…All these readings and the discussion that will follow should allow us to construct relays, backwards and forwards, between practice and theory, between research in the medium of design, and what tools we use to critically engage with this research.
Follow this link to download the essays we will read. You will also find brief descriptions and/or introductions to these essays here.
We encourage you to use this link to post comments in response to the essays and the discussion undertaken in the seminar.