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non-typological architecture

Thousands of Tiny Little Sexes

Torn, we hang on, but also yearn for something different. Something else, entirely. Quarantine brought disorientation, confinement, isolation, drudgery, and blur - but also a kind of liberation. Boundaries between separate times, spaces, and activities like home, office, school, gym and so on melted, flooding kitchens, living rooms, floors, stairs, roofs, gardens, parks grasses, bushes, benches, bridges etc. There are now calls to adapt and keep new rules/surveillance, but also to go back to normal; to get back to life as routine and endless production. But a new social ‘epidemic’ haunts the politics of control: refusal, apathy, nihilism, desire, and criticality have amplified with the pandemic’s suspension of our typical habits. Most are reassessing their values and forms of life; perhaps even finding moments of bliss in an absence of any horizon.

The pandemic was of course only an acceleration. Older political instruments like housing typology and its classes, sexes, interior programmatic divisions, roles, and values are rejected or exceeded by an intensifying flow of the same wild creative power architects unearthed to invent them. New soft or ‘invisible’ political instruments work to ‘modulate’ life in increasingly open or flexible space. Our singularity – the becoming of our thousands of tiny little sexes - is increasingly conjured up and set free, but just as quickly re-ordered, modulated, and captured. But make no mistake, history’s tyrannical god’s, mythologies and machines have not been exceeded, but interweave with nanotech.

However, increasing demands on our capacity to adapt, create and destroy expose and suspend our ‘capture’ in habits, environments, genetic coding and so on; revealing the fact that we are ‘inessential’ beings: that we lack any fixed and preordained work, ‘nature’ or destiny. This is precisely why we have the possibility of Politics and Architecture. Therefore, DIP19 is interested in pushing dissolution and ‘misuse’ much deeper. We are interested in opening up forms, myths and spectacles – things once typologised, plannified, separated, restricted and prescribed – to the possibility of new, free uses; to joyous experiments with the architecture of our reality and selves as an end in itself.

Architectural Association Diploma unit 19 with Brendon Carlin and James Kwang Ho Chung (AA 2022) (read brief here)(student presentations here)

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