Article by U67
Let’s start from here. We are one of the architectural practices born after the economic crisis, belonging to the Erasmus generation, founded by Millennials (almost..), based in a country that is not our home country, working 24 hours, always connected. As a result of the overwhelming amount of raster images we believe in the god of vector and we are never satisfied. We collect and share experiences related to design topics. We are strongly involved in academia and we believe in the Project as a Method to develop Sceneries. Each project is a way to reveal possibilities towards different points of view, a Vision that includes collective knowledge and beauty.
We are exactly like everyone else: nothing special, nothing more. This is our credo and we would like to introduce three architectural issues which a platform like KooZA/rch shares: visualization, competition and influences.
Who cares about visualization?
We start with Visualization. A year ago, after holding a lecture, a provocative question was raised: “At the end of the day: who cares about your drawings?”
We shift the question on what we call the “Importance of being Earnest”, the clarity of representation: without drawings there are no projects. So the question must be revealed for what it is: Who cares about the quality of the project today?
Most of the time as Architects we develop Projects without knowing the client and as a result clients (and politicians) get architecture without projects and many times without architects.
This means that the drawings produced are never for clients, neither are the stressful hours tracing the shadows of the planometry of the planet nor the live painting of the never ending axo of your city.
Within the field of construction drawings today are not anymore the universal language of communication, but exist as a secret code. The production of drawings, teaching and the learning of representation as a form of communication amongst a multidisciplinary team is a dream. Wake up! The cloud cad program solved the problem of representation and of questioning the Project once and for all.
The education of the client to the quality of the project is a slow process possible only under certain conditions; today they just see visualizations as a form of artistic expression, the blurred renderings are easy to sell when compared to our perspective sections.
Drawings today are understood as a form of rebellion, a new avant-garde against the hypnotic effect of shiny and polished killing raster images.
KooZA/rch is a media for this secret communication. It’s able to take the message and spread it around a community made of ever-increasing students and practices of architecture who still believe in architects which are not problem solvers but problem posers.
Architects who train themselves with sceneries and visions are faced with an army of under pressure render makers, able to align to the taste of clients.
Is anyone still believing in architectural competition?
We continue with the Competition. Most of the projects published on KooZA/rch are result of competition efforts, the latter being one of the best opportunities to engage with change on a cultural note, an excuse to test rhetorical experiments otherwise counter-productive; not by chance, often the losing projects are better known that those which are built.
On the other hand, we all should question the pertinence of such a demanding need for creativity that today’s cultural and economic context requires, putting itself in the arduous position of having to declare a winner along with hundreds of losers.
We enjoy the idea of working on an abstract, cold program without the personal engagement offered by a whatever client, in which, often, the program is a result of a personal deal that not always leads to interesting architecture.
We also entertain the way a group isolates itself to create a positive stressful situation where closure and openness are both consequences and needs of the proximity as a special environment in which to develop the project.
We believe in a necessary training of the mind: architecture competitions are a way of experimenting and speculating on topics that are very far from the client’s interests and many times also from that of the jury. Investing on oneself is a safe investment which might not lead to an economic reward but for sure adds to one’s personal growth.
Does anyone need iconic architects?
Recognizability is more a problem of the architects than of architecture itself.
Speaking about the project (not buildings because the compromise factor of that process is implied), the recognizability is merely a problem of representation: when the drawings were handmade and analogical, there was an understanding about the authorial project which led research towards a philological knowledge.
Today’s digital approach to representation denies the purpose of looking for recognizability within the project if not that for it to be a trending belonging. Nothing is original anymore, and that has been true from before the digital era.
We are everyday influenced with a series of inputs from a very multi-disciplinary world, from projects of other architects to contemporary issues or events, social behaviour, readings, new media, and so on. We are surrounded by so much that we become part of the continuum.
The purest have to shut up: it’s 2016! Tabula Rasa doesn’t exist, learn from others and believe in collective knowledge!
However we are still dreamers fascinated by projects which seem to be born out of one sketch, or on a small piece of paper, without no explanation which in fact appears superfluous compared with that first clear idea. Many architects have encountered that moment, and we wouldn’t call it the result of inspiration but just a mature approach to architecture.
By the way the haters can calm down: we are still far away. When we reach that point you will be the first to know.
Yes, we believe in architecture.