1,336 Works

A Monstrous Alliance: Open Architecture and Common Space

Gökhan Kodalak
The contemporary built environment is absorbed by a dualist spatial organisation model divided between public and private space. Within this restrictive grammar, public space, despite its democratic promise, is heavily indoctrinated and anesthetised under the hegemony of regulatory apparatuses and control mechanisms, whereas private space has catalysed, if not directly engendered, prevalent spatial problems, such as ever-increasing slums, discriminatory gentrification and ecological catastrophes, despite its self-approving assurance. Underneath this dysfunctional couple lies common space, a...

An Anthropology of Urbanism: How People Make Places (and What Designers and Planners Might Learn from It)


Brooke D. Wortham-Galvin
In their word play on what design praxis might succeed the New Urbanism movement in the United States, the July 2013 article “Newest Urbanism” in the Architect introduced to the uninitiated the concept of tactical urbanism.Defining tactical urbanism as “temporary, cheap, and usually grassroots interventions – including so-called guerrilla gardens, pop-up parks, food carts, and ‘open streets’ projects – that are designed to improve city life on a block-by-block, street-by-street basis,” the article claims that...

Generative and Participatory Parametric Frameworks for Multi-player Design Games

Henriette Bier & Yeekee Ku
Generative design processes have been the focus of current architectural research and practice largely due to the phenomenon of emergence explored within self-organisation, generative grammars and evolutionary techniques.These techniques have been informing participatory urban design modalities, which are investigated in this paper by critically reviewing theories, practices, and (software) applications that explore multi-player online urban games, with respect to not only their abilities to facilitate online trans-disciplinary expert collaboration and user participation but also to...

Video Assemblages: ‘Machinic Animism’ and ‘Asignifying Semiotics’ in the Work of Melitopoulos and Lazzarato

Jay Hetrick
In this paper I will analyse the theoretical background of a single video installation – co-created by Angela Melitopoulos and Maurizio Lazzarato – in order to unpack Deleuze and Guattari’s important but somewhat elusive concepts of ‘machinic animism’ and ‘asignifying semiotics.’ Assemblages (2010) is a three channel audio-visual documentary about the French philosopher and psychoanalyst Félix Guattari. I will argue that, in order to fully understand this work, we must interrogate the incredibly dense theoretical...

What Will the Architect Be Doing Next? How is the profession of the architect evolving as the focus of society shifts from sustainability to resilience or reactivist-driven design demands?

Alexander Mooi
A more engaging and visionary role for architects is emerging, altering focus from a technological advisor to a more sociological engineer or entrepreneur. By researching a selection of current architectural practices an attempt is made to describe this evolution of the architect’s role and to assess if this is truly a new development or even a paradigm shift. Based upon on an analysis of texts by scholars and written conversations with architects on the subject...

Intersecting Knowledge Fields and Integrating Data-Driven Computational Design en Route to Performance-Oriented and Intensely Local Architectures

Michael U Hensel & Søren S Sørensen
This paper discusses research by design efforts in architectural education, focused on developing concepts and methods for the design of performance-oriented and intensely local architectures. The pursued notion of performance foregrounds the interaction between a given architecture and its local setting, with consequences not only for the design product but also for the related processes by which it is generated. Integrated approaches to data-driven computational design serve to generate such designs. The outlined approach shifts...

Indeterminate Architecture: Scissor-Pair Transformable Structures

Daniel Rosenberg
Most traditional approaches to architectural design assume that the analysis of present situations and the prediction of future ones will offer unique answers that would ultimately define correct and unique architectural solutions. However, this approach is based on two questionable believes: First, that present situations are representative of a reality to be produced in the future, and, second, that these situations are fixed and invariable throughout time.The vision here is that an alternative approach is...

Kinetic Digitally-Driven Architectural Structures as ‘Marginal’ Objects – a Conceptual Framework

Sokratis Yiannoudes
Although the most important reasons for designing digitally-driven kinetic architectural structures seem to be practical ones, namely functional flexibility and adaptation to changing conditions and needs, this paper argues that there is possibly an additional socio-cultural aspect driving their design and construction. Through this argument, the paper attempts to debate their status and question their concepts and practices.Looking at the design explorations and discourses of real or visionary technologically-augmented architecture since the 1960s, one cannot...

Between Populism and Dogma: Álvaro Siza’s Third Way

Nelson Mota
In the early 1980s, Kenneth Frampton presented critical regionalism as an umbrella concept to frame some peripheral architectural practices that became instrumental to illustrate an alternative approach both to the modernist dogma and to post-modernist reactions. The architecture of Álvaro Siza was one of those marginal practices frequently used to illustrate that alternative position.In this paper I will bring together critical regionalism and its critique to explore the possibility of its role as a mediator...

Discotheques, Magazines and Plexiglas: Superstudio and the Architecture of Mass Culture

Ross K. Elfline
This article considers the groundbreaking works of the Italian Radical Architecture collective Superstudio (active 1966–80) with an eye to their complex and contradictory relationship to popular culture. Superstudio’s early pronouncements stating their abstention from building presaged their decision to investigate the radical potential of different non-tectonic mediums culled from consumer culture.Initially, the group embraced popular culture and mass-production for their ability to challenge the hidebound discipline of architecture, leading them to produce an assortment of...

She Said, He Said: Denise Scott Brown and Kenneth Frampton on Popular Taste

Deborah Fausch
During the post-war period, the nature of ‘the people’ and popular culture was a matter of intense interest to the disciplines of architecture and urban design. These issues stand behind a debate between Denise Scott Brown and Kenneth Frampton in the December 1971 issue of Casabella. The disagreement between Frampton and Scott Brown concerns three issues: the nature of ‘the people’, the character of popular culture, and the role of architects in relation to popular...

Curating the Urban Utopia of Fun

Maroš Krivý
The article reviews the exhibition Dreamlands, staged in Centre Pompidou, Paris in summer 2010. The exhibition's main theme is described as urban 'utopia of fun'. In relation to this utopia, the article suggests a field of contradictory positions within which the presented exhibits can be distributed. Curating of the exhibition is discussed in the next step. The inability to bring forward and map these contradictory positions is analysed as a main shortcoming of the exhibition.

Appropriating Modernism: From the Reception of Team 10 in Portuguese Architectural Culture to the SAAL Programme (1959-74)

Pedro Baía
This paper aims to map the relations between the Portuguese appropriation of Team 10’s architectural ideas and the housing policies launched by the state, especially through the SAAL programme, which stood for Ambulatory Support to Local Residents Programme and ran for a brief period between 1974 and 1976.Through an intellectual speculation based on an analysis of the historical discourse, this paper seeks to demonstrate how the critical and interpretative reception of Team 10’s ideas by...

The Odd One Out? Revisiting the Belgian Welfare State

Cor Wagenaar
Michael Ryckewaert publication Building the Economic Backbone of the Belgian Welfare State. Infrastructure, planning and architecture 1945-1973 describes the evolution of the welfare state and Belgium, more specifically its spatial characteristics. This by now historical socio-political model had decidedly collectivist traits, culminating in the provision of social security networks and a vast expansion of the public domain. If collectivism was one of the key elements of the welfare state, the absence of centralized planning appears...

The Multiple Modernities of Sweden

Janina Gosseye
This article reviews the book Swedish Modernism. Architecture, Consumption and the Welfare State, edited by Helena Mattsson and Sven-Olov Wallenstein. In this volume, the editors plea for the construction of ‘multiple modernities’, following which a more diversified understanding of the European welfare state can be constructed.Through twelve contributions by a group of international scholars, Mattsson and Wallenstein aspire to initiate the construction of an emblematic Swedish modernism. The book offers an intricate and diversified reading...

The Ruins of the British Welfare State

Tahl Kaminer
The subjects of Owen Hatherley’s A Guide to the New Ruins of Great Britain are architecture and urban development. The book addresses also some broader cultural, political and economic references, as well as personal anecdotes and memories. It includes many encounters with the remnants of the British welfare state.As an extension to his blog postings and a sequel of sorts to his previous Militant Modernism, Hatherley’s antagonist here is the semi-official architecture of New Labour,...

You are Hungry: Flâneuring, Edible Mapping and Feeding Imaginations

Mikey Tomkins
The idea of growing food in cities, often termed urban agriculture (UA), is rapidly becoming a popular concept linked to ideas of sustainable cities. However, for most residents it is a difficult concept to visualize due to the complexity of the built environment. This research uses 32 participatory walks with 150 local residents around a 25-hectare site within east London to explore reactions to the idea of potential UA landscapes. The starting point for walks...

Bridging: The Spatial Construction of Knowledge in Architectural Research

Klaske Havik
This contribution proposes an interdisciplinary approach to architectural research, and states that composition is a methodological act of research. It will first argue that architectural research and practice can gain from a multi-perspectival approach, bringing in knowledge from different fields – in this case the field of literature.Referring to the author’s recently finished dissertation, it proposes a literary approach to architecture and the city, and explains how the ambiguities of architecture (subject-object, author-user and reality-fiction)...

(Recovering) China’s Urban Rivers as Public Space

Kelly Shannon & Chen Yiyong
This article focuses on the revered role rivers in China once held – in cartography, history, mythology, festivals, cities, and everyday life. It reviews and summarizes ‘hydraulic civilization’, taking cognizance of feng shui as it does so. Four historical cases testify to the fact that China’s great cities were founded on riverbanks and developed in tandem with floodplain dynamics.Over time, a tension developed between the civilizing force of the city and water’s natural energy. Industrialization...

Trans-disciplinarity: The Singularities and Multiplicities of Architecture

Lukasz Stanek & Tahl Kaminer
This inaugural issue of Footprint aims at understanding today’s architecture culture as a negotiation between two antithetical definitions of architecture’s identity. The belief in the disciplinary singularity of architectural objects, irreducible to the conditions of their production, is confronted – in discourse and design – with the perception of architecture as an interdisciplinary mediation between multiple political, economic, social, technological and cultural factors. With the concept of trans-disciplinarity, the negotiation between these two positions is...

On Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall and 'The Unilever Series'


Wouter Davidts
Since the opening Tate Modern in 2000, the vast space of the Turbine Hall has hosted The Unilever Series. Widely acclaimed artists Louise Bourgeois, Juan Munõz, Anish Kapoor, Olafur Eliasson, Bruce Nauman, Rachel Whiteread, Carsten Höller and most lately Doris Salcedo accepted the invitation to ‘tackle’ what is arguably the biggest museum space in the world and realized what is invariably held to be their ‘biggest work ever.’The Unilever Series is not the only large-scale...

Mapping Urban Complexity in an Asian Context

Gregory Bracken & Heidi Sohn
The second issue of Footprint aims at reuniting two themes which are receiving a great deal of attention in recent times: Asia’s extraordinary urban growth, and the problematique of mapping highly complex urban environments. The 21st century, forecasted by many as the ‘Pacific Century’, brings to the fore the region's economic, social, political and cultural changes, wide-ranging in their manifestation and far-reaching in their consequence. All of these factors are inscribed in the urban environment....

Spatial ‘Complexity’: Analysis of the Evolution of Beijing’s Movement Network and its Effects on Urban Functions

Qiang Sheng
This paper is an attempt to read the dramatic transformations happening in Beijing from a spatial perspective. Based on a model developed by Spacelab, which understands scale as being constructed in movement and communications technologies, we try to represent this process on two levels: first, on the morphology of the movement network itself, I would like to show how technological development of highway, metro and bus systems change the way people move in the city;...

Caves of Steel: Mapping Hong Kong in the 21st Century


Jonathan D. Solomon
Hong Kong’s extraordinary density, the results of a unique geography, economy, and political history, is often represented in cramped housing conditions, unusual sectional conditions, and variations on building typologies. This paper argues that Hong Kong’s density, in combination with its climate and consumer economy, has in fact effected a wholesale interiorisation of public society unprecedented in contemporary urban form. 'Caves of Steel' is borrowed from the title of a 1954 novel by science fiction master...

Brentano on Space

Leslie Kavanaugh
In Vienna at the end of the nineteenth century, a virtual explosion occured of thought, creativity and revolutionary energy. At the origins of phenomenology, Franz Brentano took inspiration from Aristotle's de Anima in order to provide the bridge between mental acts [psychisch] and sensible phenomena [physisch]; the link or relationship which he called intentional in-existence. Phenomenology would completely change the direction of how philosophy constituted its problems – the relation between the “physical” and the...

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