||... is an architect,
designer, writer and researcher practicing independently and as part of
the design collective Other Forms.
I work between and across design, scholarship, criticism, curatorial,
and publishing projects. Tying these together is an interest in
systems, structures and relations and the ways in which these
abstractions might be formalized, (re)materialized, and activated as
sites of engagement.
In my research, this set of concerns is directed towards consideration
of the terms of the political as it intersects with architecture,
design and urbanism. In this, I am interested in drawing parallels
between art and design practices that develop formal structures for
performance and event production, and with architecture and urbanism.
Also, I consider the ways that the relational structures of production
industrial or in the terms of various conceptions of the "post
industrial" - map onto and are integrated and entangled with the
relations of reproduction and cultural formation.
In material practice, this orientation towards systems, relations and
discourse has informed a range of engagements with curatorial,
exhibition, and event projects. These work to overlay built
construction with the production of texts and design of information.
Also, in my fabrication, publishing and project management, work I
endeavor to engage critically to with existing production, logistical
and information systems so as to push, expand and discover their
Here can be found current information about ongoing work and upcoming
events as well as a hyperlinked curriculum vitae plotting
trajectory of my projects and the "course of my life," an archive
documenting my research, teaching and design work and my contact
July 8, 2016
Utopia and Just After: A Magnitogorsk Travelogue
lunch lecture at Raumlabor
I will give a talk about going to Magnitogorsk to participate in a
conference on the legacies of the “Socialist City” and encountering the
cities and cultures that have proceeded from the project of building an
industrial utopia of total production.
June 13, 2016
"Common Knowledge: An Interview with Michael Mandiberg"is
out in the Berlin Art Link
We discuss Mandiberg's instalation Print Wikipedia: From Aachen to
Zylinderdruckpresse at Import Projects.
Out Now: “Rules
for Breaking In: Squatter Handbooks as Radical Specifications,” ARPA
Journal, Issue 4: Instruments of Service
April 20, 2016
I will be giving a class on squatters' handbooks as part of the Aleppo/Public
School for Architecture Brussels Black Market event at
Avenue du Port 86c, Brussels
Architecture as a profession and a practice is constituted by a set of
codes and conditions that embed the discipline within a regulated
environment of production and exchange. What does it mean for
architecture if these formal protocols are transgressed and space is
produced under the conditions of an informal economy? How can
architecture operate within an alternative economy and what does that
imply for its users?
This series of classes is organized in the context of black market,
which appears in the frame of ArtBrussels 2016 as a space to display
the use of black market strategies in artistic creation and to
investigate the topic of circulation beneath the realm of the visible.
Examples of Architectural/Design Activism
Louisa Vermoere and Andrea Sollazzo
The strongly hierarchical macro-structures that rule our society and
contemporary cities are founded on the desire of total control and
organization. This "genetic bug" of our modern world leaves behind a
lot of opportunity for creativity and free expressions. It is in the
cracks of our over-complex society that lay the opportunities to
stimulate a debate between the different actors of the urban space. The
insertion in some strategic but forgotten urban space in European
cities of small design interventions will have the multiple intentions
of provoking a reaction both from citizens and from the institutions
and at the same time revitalize a blind corner of the city.
Rules for Breaking (In)
In the administrative structures of building codes, planning codes, and
the systems of laws and policies governing property ownership, housing
distribution, etc. urban space is literally “coded” into existence.
Cities are however layered with many other sets of formal and informal
codes, programs and languages that script, choreograph and mediate the
social relations of urban life, and the way that urban space is
produced and value is produced in it. As much as the practice of
Architecture involves producing objects and images, it also can be
framed in terms of the code writing, scripting and choreography that
operates within the semiotic structures of the city.
In forms including instructions, rules to games, and ‘recipes,’
explicitly articulated scripts became a central element of performance
art in the 1960s. From there, script writing was taken up by architects
and others involved with radical experiments in spatial practice and
built environments and would inform an array of handbooks, guidebooks,
cookbooks and catalogs that communicated instructions and practical
information aimed at enabling readers to do new things or live in new
ways. These kind of publications are iconic hallmark utopian projects
seeking to leave the city and inscribe new forms of community, but they
would also play an important roll in radical urban movements
synthesizing spatial and political practice.
This workshop will consider the form of the “squatters’ handbook” as it
has appeared in different iterations in contexts from Amsterdam to
London to New York City. These handbooks, or guides will be used to
frame a discussion of the relationships between publishing and media
production practice, building and material intervention in the city,
and articulations of politics and political practice in urban space.
This discussion will consider the possibilities of imagining radical
modes of architectural practice that writes into, rewrites, or hacks
the various code system that create and organize the city.
Area C, System D - Dealings along the Jerusalem-Ramallah road
A screening of an excerpt from Area C, System D, a work in progress by
artist and documentarian Polina Medvedeva followed by a Q and A with
Area C, System D
Dealings along the Jerusalem-Ramallah road, ±60min, 2016
Filmed over the course of 2014/2015 in Al-Ram, Kufr Aqab and the
Qalandia, Al Amari and Kaddura refugee camps, the documentary deals
with informal sociopolitical structures in the area, which remains
practically ungoverned by both Palestinian and Israeli authorities,
focussing on the thriving grey economy and self-government along the
main Jerusalem-Ramallah road, where shops and buildings are unlicensed,
the cars often stolen and where the electricity and sewer lines are
built on one’s own initiative.
Told from the perspectives of the shopkeepers and a group of young
musicians, it is a parallel narration of both daily struggle and
resilience, desperation and the power of individuals, whirled in a
constant bustle of vibrant enterprise and rap.
Black market is free and open to the public. In order to gain access to
the fair you must register by emailing email@example.com.
December 21, 2015
Review of the exhibition Regarding Spectatorship: Revolt and the Distant
Observer at Kunstraum
Kreuzberg/Bethanien for Berlin Art Link.
December 10, 19:00
Auditorium Sandberg Instituut, Overschiestraat 188, Amsterdam
I will be at the Sandberg Insitute Dirty Art Department
talking about Other Forms projects and practice and the
book Making Room: Culturial Production in Occupied Spaces.
From a “dirty,” materialist perspective both the characteristics, and
the meaning or significance of aesthetic production (art, media,
culture, ect.) have a lot to do with the ways in which the production
takes place. Making radical, critical or simply new things often
depends on creating new ways of making things, living and “making a
living.” Other Forms is a research and design collective that works
between architecture, graphic design, and publishing. Other Forms takes
a critical approach both to design work itself and to the material and
social conditions of its practice.
Plans are being made for a trip to Magnitogorsk
October to give a paper at The Socialist City and the Sociocultural
Aspects of Urbanization conference at Magnitogorsk State
University, visit archives and see some of the locations that I have
written about: Ernst May's "socialist city" housing, the steel
mills modeled on Gary Indiana and Cleveland Ohio, and the pit that
marks where the magnetic mountain once stood. In Chelyabinsk, I will
look for the factories designed by Albert Kahn and other American and
Western European "specialist" architects. These factories converted
steel produced in Magnitogorsk into industrial goods and war material
earning Chelyabinsk the nickname "Tankograd."
"‘In the (Silicon) Gutter but Looking at the Stars':
An Interview about the Nonhuman Autonomous Space Agency,"is
out in the Berlin Art Link,
Space Issue, in which Fred Scharmen and I discuss the roll of pictorial
representation in defining the space colonies movement of the 1970s and
speculate on the potentials of space being colonized by photogenic,
social media friendly, cute animals.
Work is underway on an exhibition and series of discussions and events
that will be held in mid September at ABC No Rio on
New York’s Lower East Side. These will elaborate on the material in Making
Room, add more stories from New York City and
conversations about the potentials of oral history and activist
research and scholarship.
This will coincide with Other Forms tabling with JOAAP in the
Friendly Fire section of the New York Art Book Fair
The 2015 JVE A event series Jaw Versus Eye Attack
will take place in Berlin, 28 July - 1 August 2015.
On 11:15-13:00 on THURSDAY, 30 JULY there will be a presentation and
panel discussion on Cultural Production in Occupied Spaces with Alan
Smart, Marc Herbst, Nina Fraeser and Tina Steiger.
Downards a review, by Alan Smart and Lousia Corna,
of Keller Easterling's book Subtraction
is now online with Mute — the journal that gladly feasts on those who
would subdue us.
Making Room: Cultural Production in Occupied Spaces
Exhibition for Making Room: Cultural Production in Occupied Spaces
at the 2015 meeting of the Squatting Europe
Kollective (SqEK) in Barcelona.