Archive for September, 2009

00:/ Changing Practice_ RIBA Research Symposium 2009

September 30, 2009

Last Thursday Indy spoke at the RIBA Research Symposium 2009 Changing Practice, along with an interdisciplinary mix of practitioners, theoreticians and researchers including Anne Lacaton, Keith Bradley, Stephen Hill, Liza Fior and Jonathan Charley. The symposium aimed to provide a context to present the challenges and opportunities to architectural practice – to look at and question the ways in which we operate. Amongst the talks there were some inspiring examples of how architects have strategically challenged the status quo, along with passionate rallying calls for us all to take responsibility for changing the profession.

It will be well worth downloading the papers from the RIBA Research website when they become available.

10:10 Age of Stupid

September 2, 2009

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Back in April a few of us went to see this film by the makers of the McLibel documentary. In a similar vein, The Age of Stupid tells the story of human kind looking back on itself from the future (2055) and asking how we could have saved ourselves from a climate apocalypse. Its an insightful documentary, which really emphasises the critical crossroads that we are at – in how blinkered our society is to the damage that is being done by a small percentage of the worlds population to the world, and our inability to believe that there is a real problem. I’m sure there will be a lot of debate by climate change experts, climate change non-believers, etc … but the really provocative moment for me was the live Q&A session after the film. Having been shocked into the urgency of the need for pro-active change in our consumption patterns, the post film momentum launched straight into a cornering of Ed Miliband, putting pressure squarely at his doorstep and his actions at the Copenhagen Summit in December – seen by many as the seminal moment in the future of climate change. And beyond the content of the film, the way in which it was financed and launched is another fine example of the micro massive. The film was made possible through a combination of volunteering and crowd funding that ranged from small donations through to larger investments with a share of profits in return. The launch of the film was organised as a People’s Premiere with screenings simultaneously held at over 60 cinema’s across the UK, with a solar powered link up to the premiere in Leicester Square. Basically – the film would not have been feasible without the involvement of the crowd.

For me, the film surfaced many questions about the role of the individual – how disempowered  many of us feel from being active citizens. And at what point do we stand up and become accountable for our actions. What will it take to shake us from our apathy?

Well – yesterday, the team Stupid launched the 10:10 campaign at the Tate Modern, that asks individuals and institutions to vow to cut their carbon footprints by 10% with the hope of creating enouogh mass momentum to be able to challenge the UK government to  make the same commitment. Supported by everyone from Stella McCartney, Ken Livingstone and Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall to the RSA, NHS Hospitals and energy company Eon, there will be the inevitable critics out there who will debate the affect of a single persons actions – but as we are seeing more and more, it is the collective action of many individuals coming together that is the solution – a solution made from simple everyday actions. Its not complicated.

00:/ Competition Success

September 1, 2009

Architecture Foundation : London_Istanbul Exchange Programme

00:/ has been selected as one of the three London practices to participant in the London_Istanbul Exchange Programme from the 2-5 November 2009, ran by the Architecture Foundation and their Istanbul partner, Garanti Gallery and Arkitera. We will also be attending the Urban Age Conference from the 4-5th November.

We are at a crucial point in architecture where we are asking – what is the role of the architect? We hope the exchange will create an opportunity to debate and investigate the possibilities across these two contexts, hopefully, catalysing both our and our exchange partner’s response. Istanbul is of particular relevance as a research ground as it has not undergone the degree of atomisation of societal structures that we have seen in London and by consequence Istanbul presents an opportunity to forensically examine the strengths and weaknesses of a living civic economy.

SH

00:/ Outreach

September 1, 2009

Getting into Architecture Workshop: Tower Hamlets Summer University

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On the 11th August 2009, 00:/ ran the Tower Hamlet Summer University course ‘Getting into Architecture’. The aim of the day was to explore what working in the architectural professional could be with the 15 young people (16-25 years old). The participants were interested in architecture and possible careers as architects and the course allowed them to ask questions, hear first-hand experiences about routes into the profession and the day-to-day work of an architect. The design of the workshop allowed the participants a taster into a range of activities from debate, critical explanation of space, site explorations , design, representation and presentation of ideas, and evaluation. The workshop incorporated our own approach to architecture, for example, we questioned what architecture could be, discussed the responsibilities of the profession and the tools we use in a spatial agency approach. The day ended with a visit to our office. We are very grateful to George Lovett who helped facilitate the day with Sarah.

SH

http://www.summeruni.org/