about
Toon menu

snippets

Wim Cuyvers, park ranger nor Parck Farmer

kotkot2-1.jpg

- An introduction to Wim Cuyvers' work on public space, slightly edited and translated from a Dutch text by Kristien Van den Brande: ‘In and throughout his work as an architect, writer and artist Wim Cuyvers searches for moments of existentiality: moments of resignation, of confrontation, of ecstasy, when one exposes his- or herself. The moment when we cease resisting against an unplannable or uncontrollable life and fully give in to the now. For this type of moments each and every one of us se...
Lees meer

Responsibility - Loading

screen-shot-2018-06-08-at-11.12.22.png

We are citizens of a century of a change. Century where paradox situations are as real as never before, with the biggest accommodation service company not having a single hotel - Air Bnb, largest transportation company not having a single car - Uber, Biggest media company not having a single official journalist - Facebook. We are witnesses of a shift and development of a variety of sectors ranging from healthcare, teaching, learning, working and of course - transmitting and perceiving the inform...
Lees meer

Unbuildable architecture - activism on a paper

take-note-canadian-center-for-architecture-exhibition-bernard-tschumi-advertisements-for-architecture.jpg

‘To really appreciate architecture, you may even need to commit a murder.’ - Bernard Tschumi expressed in one of his ‘Advertisements for Architecture’ - a series of postcards based on the thought that architecture is quite frequently experienced through imagery and verbal format rather than in real world and built environments. Without any doubt, all realised architecture is perceived by individuals in every day life, although majority of individuals do not actually care of the spiritual meaning...
Lees meer

Can true activism only exist with(out) corporations?

recyclart.jpg

Stefan Damsin from Recyclart doesn’t consider himself, nor the organisation in itself, ‘activism’. Something that flabbergasted me when I first heard it during his Sofa Talk in the WTC I tower on the 9th of march 2018. Then it hit me at the exact moment he said “For years we received subsidies from the people we are now against, we have to answer to so many organisations outside of Recyclart still, that we can’t – truly – be activists”, that maybe he was right. The work Recyclart does, especiall...
Lees meer

Intercultural public space

schermafbeelding-2018-06-08-om-00.46.20.png

Now a days more attention is given on to the human dimension in the city planning and the need for quality in the public spaces. Importance of public spaces is universally accepted by one and all. The question is what makes public space more successful? The designer is trying to give best model of good public spaces. However we find that many times well designed public space also doesn't generate good public response.  What is successful public space? Successful public space are the place whic...
Lees meer

"The Power of a Kiss" by Nicolas Mansour

18sd1.jpg

            “My God, Help Me Survive This Deadly Love” A kiss ( also known in old English as cyssan, or coss ) is an old action, behavior of showing gratitude, love, passion, respect , friendship , peace etc. It depends from one culture to another , from one tradition to another, It may be one , two , or three. Some people kiss the cheeks , turn each others cheeks to touch, lip kiss . Others just be so annoying and make a fake kissing sound with their lips , bus...
Lees meer

How to reclaim the public space : step 3

you-wouldnt-sexism-to-sell-it-berlin.jpg

Last year, the city of Liège renewed their contract with the multinational corporation JCDecaux for the next 15 years. This company is mainly known for their bus-stop advertising systems and billboards. In Liège, the contract covers 1.900 m² of public space with publicities. This new contract was criticized a lot by the inhabitants: non sustainable, unhealthy, unsafe for the road users, ugly infrastructures,... They don’t like it and they are right: for 1€ generated by the advertising, 11.5€ are...
Lees meer

Challenging Architecture and Activism as We Know It

are-you-on-the-road-to-democracy-and-freedom-occupyhk-admiralty-hongkong-hk-hkig.jpg

During the course of a semester, numerous open discussions, presentations, and sofa talks all took place within the environment of a rough exposed concrete interior on the 24th floor of the WTC building in Brussels. These weekly meetings involved discussing current topics and texts in relation to architecture and activism over some enthusiastic chatter, laughs, and sarcastic remarks.   Coming from a background where I had no exposure or sense of activism, and, further more, its relation to arc...
Lees meer

Reminescent thoughts - Diana Galatus

trousers.jpg

One day, in March, we went to visit the RecyclArt in Brussels, a place that faced too many issues in order to be understood by everyone in only one storytelling session. A quick description of the place: well-anchored function powerfully linked with the neighborhood, changing faces at each corner. First, it looks like an extension of the skatepark, then there is a bar, oh and an office! People are working in here. But wait, there is a train station too and if you wait a little bit more, there’s...
Lees meer

about jargon

asdasdsadd.jpg

During the course of the architecture and activism elective, we were occasionally talking about the various terms abundantly used not only in architecture, but generally in our contemporary globalised meritocratic world. I consider myself too part of this phenomenon, and I am sometimes guilty of using these terms too. This text is, ironically, probably no exception. Nonetheless it might be worth to critically examine these circumstances. In architecture, terms such as strategy or sustainable or...
Lees meer

Non-place; the ultimate playground for urban activism and civil disobedience

paris-farmers.jpg

Imagine, an urban scenery with a mass demonstration right in the center of the city. And around the corner; the sudden metamorphosis of a monumental building into a dirty squat. What we see is a kind of centralised urban activism, very known by the common mind. Centralised in the sense that the efficiency of such activism seems to rely on the centrality of its location, both geographically and socially. As if: the more central, the more momentum. A little poke in the heart shakes up the whole ci...
Lees meer

THE THIRD SPHERE - a General Theory of Heterotopia in a Nutshell  

heterotopia-and-the-city-powered-by-oxumoron.jpg

 (On the occasion of last classes and as prologue to a long summer, a short text on heterotopia...)  Heterotopia is a concept of Michel Foucault and literally means 'other place' (hetero- topos). He introduced the neologism as a counterpart to the concept of utopia (non-place or eutopy, good place). Foucault's examples give a good idea: the military service, the honeymoon, saunas, hammams, holiday villages, museums, theaters, cinemas, library, cemeteries, elderly homes, psychiatric institutions...
Lees meer

A retroactive manifesto for Pic Nic the Streets: lessons in architecture and activism

-sb01505.jpg

When it comes to urban democracy it is dangerous to stare blind on the machinations of power and the creation of consent through consensus politics. It makes that discussions on democracy tend to drift away to the misty margins of society, where business negotiations in stylish board rooms are backed by brute police power. More important is the question how to re-imagine democracy in the neoliberal city. Let me tell you the history of Pic Nic the Streets. It was a civil movement shaking the very...
Lees meer

Intervention at Rozebeke Cemetery by Wim Cuyvers: lessons in architecture and activism

cuyvers-jaar08-proj14-01.jpg

Wim Cuyvers set up twenty tents overnight on the cemetery in Rozebeke, a subdistrict of Zwalm, within the pattern of the surrounding gravestones and at the same time showing absolute respect for the latest graves. This was part of 'Art and Zwalm 2007’, and was an extremely serious response to the organisers’ assignment: to transcend the boundaries of the artistic and examine the relationships between art and the local social, economic and geographical situation. The tents provide shelter for t...
Lees meer

Stalker's Savorengo Ker, 'the house of all': lessons in architecture and activism

savarengo-ker-2.jpg

In studying the link between architecture and activism we cannot but take a close look at the ‘Savorengo Ker’ project of Stalker/Osservatorio Nomade. The title of the Savorengo Ker project reads as ‘The House of All’ in Romani language. The work is about a wooden chalet-like structure in the informal settlement Casilino 900, a non-authorised and non-equipped settlement of around 650 Roma people located in the outskirts of the City of Rome. The construction of the wooden chalet was done collecti...
Lees meer