Encounter, Dialogue, Architecture - ISPLORA

Trailer Encounter, Dialogue, Architecture

The connection that is generated between users and spaces exceeds a mere geometric precondition and that is when the idea prefigured by designers takes multiple directions, related to the architect’s sensitivity in grasping its most significant elements. In architectural design, what is referred to as the “primacy of sight” not only influences what is perceived by the users’ eye, but it also transfers to their actions, to the motor sphere and the use of space, moving and orienting according to external stimuli.

Thus the thematic interweaving of space-individual-perception and architecture-encounter-communication finds space in a contemporary debate in which design expression becomes dialogue and method through which two or more parties can be related. Such relation of elements in architecture means identifying it with a technical and interpretative function of heterogeneous elements, setting it within a contingency made of multiple layers: user aspirations and context meanings, limitations of regulations and opportunities of available technologies, building processes and durability over time. 

In this sense, “practicing architecture” stands as a technique that supports processes of change, where users pass through its new spaces enriching themselves with previously nonexistent meanings. And just like in dialogue, at its end, previously unseen, un-transmitted elements emerge, finally become matter. It is no longer a matter, as until even very recent times, of understanding architecture and communicating its value, but rather of a new enlarged way of conceiving it, a way in which architecture, per se, has become part of communication, a tool of and for communication.
Communicating architecture is something far more complex than showing it as a built outcome, a result embedded in a context. Communicating it means several things: narrating its design journey, highlighting its relationship with the architect, its value as an image. 

“Alongside the main purpose aimed at the dissemination of architectural culture through its ‘spectacularization’ (communicating architecture is the line followed by experts to popularize, in the broadest sense of the term, the art of building), architecture has become an icon, a symbol, a global communication tool.”
COMMUNICATING ARCHITECTURE, by Maurizio Bradaschia - XXI Century (2010) for Treccani

Between architecture and communication, between encounter and perception, the work of Ipostudio and 2MIX Architetti moves in a multidisciplinary narration between heterogeneity and multidisciplinarity, in a design investigation that addresses and delves into the different ways of transforming reality and contemporary living. While the domestic spaces - among others - of Villa E, Casa DA and Casa VV become an opportunity for research in which architectural thought moves toward new forms of communication, Ipostudio’s words accompany the user through the Florentine urban texture, in a change of scale that includes imposing works capable of transforming the use of public space and the appearance of entire parts of the city - such as Micas in Malta - and “urban scenic machines,” capable of signaling and triggering the fruition of once inaccessible structures, such as the Access to the Museo degli Innocenti.

A new attitude, aimed at approaching the city and architecture with the desire to make a fresh start. A narration that shows how, in order to change the way of “inhabiting the city,” it is not necessary to revolutionize its fabric: what matters, in fact, is being able to connect with the people who live (or visit) it, creating projects that function as “urban activators,” projects that nurture encounters.

Learning objectives:

  • The lesson addresses the topic of the building as an urban and cultural activator within the contemporary city. The term contemporary indicates the intention to reestablish the roles of each building, thus defining space not by what it was but by what it should be, through a presence that is never absolute or permanent.
  • The lesson explores design proposals that fit into the historical fabric and as civic architecture place themselves at the service of the community. Specific case studies are: the Museo degli Innocenti, the new entrance for the Careggi Hospital, the new MICAS in Malta, the CX Florence Student Place.
  • The lesson addresses the question “how can architecture be communicated today?” by proposing the analogy “communication as dialogue” and suggesting relating multiple parts as a method. In this sense, architecture is capable of revealing previously invisible elements that became matter and design.
  • It addresses the issue of how materials, details and technological choices influence the perception of domestic interiors, characterizing the users’ use of spaces. Specifically, the architect is seen as an anticipator of spatial change that has not yet occurred, capable of predicting how reality will be transformed. Case studies of this are Villa E, Casa DA and Casa VV.


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