...ANOTHER WORLD WAS ON ITS WAY.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, design had its peak as a political and transformative tool. The Montreal Expo from 1967 presented ambitious projects such as Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic dome, Frei Otto's cable net structure, Moshe Safdie’s Habitat, and Gorazd Čelechovský’s Etarea.
Visions between political emancipation and cybernetic control. Options that never became models. 335.000 people attended the opening ceremonies and celebrated together, with a space age-style countdown, the “Man and His World”. It was broadcasted live to more than 700 million people worldwide, who became part of the theme and the question, how they / we want(ed) to live together. People were full of hope.
The main players kept on designing, building and inventing until the late 1970s. Many of their ideas still seem relevant today, some were never realized, some didn’t make it into serial production, most are forgotten. The Reagan and Thatcher years made us loners, competitors, and dystopians.
However, what was possible then should be even more possible now! Do we really believe that? Or do we expect great cultural shifts only from the entrepreneurial CEOs in Silicon Valley and elsewhere?
„When you give everyone a voice and give people power, the system usually ends up in a really good place,” declared Mark Zuckerberg in the early days of Facebook. We know how it went.
History plays a role when it tells us a story about the future, but not if we use it as a framework to confirm those who already occupy the positions of power. We must make the present the trigger of another future, using history as a guide. Together we will find models from the past which work in the future. What are the real stories behind them? How do we fix these ideas? How can we update them? How can they go into serial production and become architectural arguments for the future we envision?
Structure and Method
During the last semesters we looked into different themes at the core of our discipline. From The Property Show, dealing with the question of ownership an accessibility; over The Real Virtuality, investigating the influence of new technologies on our daily life and the built environment; to Architecture as Argument, updating our perspective on the architectural praxis from education to practice.
This semester we want to use architectural design as a tool to enable a different future. Therefore, we will look into the past and present, into known and unknown architectural visions and characters, and speculate about new typologies, building laws, tools and characters.
We will start from five concrete premises. Assumptions on our future way of living – some likely, some unlikely from today’s perspective. The course is aimed at designing architectural models that support these visions and tell the stories behind. Including interviews with experts, inventing characters who are part of it, creating virtual worlds that allow to speculate.
Accompanying Courses and Inputs
The design class will be accompanied by a technical course that will take place five times at the beginning of the semester. Students will learn how to use film-editing software, camera equipment & green-screen and other programs (such as After-Effects) to work on their videos.
Besides there will be weekly inputs at the beginning of the semester on Storytelling (by Christopher Roth), Futurology (by Ludwig Engel), Character-Design (by Ariana Berndl) and Sci-Fiction writing (by Leif Randt).
We highly recommend the two Wahlfächer “Storytelling” by Christopher Roth and “Theorie and Praxis” by Christian Posthofen.
Architecture is always thought and communicated through models and drawings. Still, it is more than an object. It is defined by content and context, both time-based elements. Starting from this point, the question becomes — how can time-based media, such as video and television, bring both spatial and temporal dimension of architecture into a discussion? Storytelling allows for an argument to be made, and for an architect(ure) to occupy a political position.
Therefore, television as a technology de-centers the view from the object, and challenges our usual way of thinking of architecture. Could we use television as our tool to communicate and design architecture?