Hypermedia, workshop on configuration and communication of the architectural project, is an interdepartmental research group of The Polytechnic University of Madrid, located at ETSAM.

Radical spatiality : dissident architectural practices in contemporary occupations (2017)

TESIS: (Thesis)

Title: Radical Spatiality: Dissident Architectural Practices in Contemporary Occupations. (2017)

  • Author(s): Ana Medina Gavilanes.
  • Director(s): Atxu Amann and Alcocer and Arturo Blanco Herrero.
  • Roundup: Tahrir Square, Occupy Wall Street, and Gezi Park/Taksim Square are contemporary occupations that deploy a series of dissident actions in public space, while questioning the relationship between urban architecture and social practices. One of the characteristics of these movements is the inclusion of virtual space as a generator of actions within the physical space, thus forming a new space. Through the use of digital technologies and together with the expansion of social networks, devices are promoted that create new architectural dynamics and practices in the city, and also make the outdated state of an urban infrastructure, which is contended by a radical transformation of public spaces in an instant and temporary way. In the development of these occupations, a multitude takes shape in the physical and virtual public space, the contemporary public space, the same that alters the image and the use of fixed and established spaces and transforms them into a system of intermittent spaces, consequently affecting the boundaries between the public and the private, the external and the inner, the everyday and the exceptional. A new dissident and temporal ad-hoc architecture is produced that leads to the construction of a Radical Space, which allows to generate a series of spontaneous and dissident architectural practices and processes. These relationships focus on architectural elements that are explored and used in a dissident way: acting within the boundaries of local urban regulations, analyzing the current spatial situation, projecting areas to inhabit in a way building lightweight but resilient structures that meet the needs of occupants, reconfiguring the organization of urban objects, and applying devices to project spatial appropriation through collective practices and performatives. On the other hand, contemporary occupations relate to two important aspects in the construction of the urban architectural landscape: the design of public spaces and urban regulations. Following the development of these social movements, different local governments have significantly promoted the implementation of the privatization of public spaces through the urban model "POPS: Privately Owned Public Space",[Espacios Públicos Privados] and the development of an architectural design manual for public spaces. These two tools are systematically applied and reproduced in geographically and culturally distant cities, consequently causing the construction of a homogeneous urban architectural landscape, displacing local history and dynamics, and demonstrating spatial and social control through architectural design. In the face of this situation, architectural practices of post-public spaces are proposed, such as dissident actions that operate collectively, temporarily and intermittently.
  • Abstract: Tahrir Square, Occupy Wall Street, and Gezi Park /Taksim Square, are contemporary occupations that unfold a series of dissident actions in the public space, questioning at the same time the relationships between urban architecture and social practices. One of the common characteristics of these movements is the inclusion of the virtual space as a generator of actions inside the physical space, forming consequently a new space. Thus, through the use of digital technologies alongside the expansion of social networks, they promote dispositives that create new architectural dynamics and practices in the city, and simultaneously make visible the obsolete state of an urban infrastructure, which is contended by a radical transformation of public spaces in temporal and instantaneous means. In the development of these occupations, a multitude takes form in the physical and virtual public space, the contemporary public space, which alters the image and use of fixed and established spaces, and transforms them in a system of intermittent spaces, affecting subsequently the limits between public and private, exterior and interior, quotidian and exceptional. It produces a new dissident and temporal ad-hoc architecture that conducts to the construction of a Radical Spatiality, allowing to generate a series of architectural practices and processes that are spontaneous and disobedient. These relationships focus on architectural elements that are explored and used in a dissident way. On the one hand, acting inside the limits of local urban regulations, analysing spatial current situations, and projecting zones to inhabit temporary. On the other hand, constructing light but resistant structures that respond to occupiers' needs, reconfiguring the organization of urban objects, and applying dispositives to develop a spatial appropriation through collective and performative practices. Furthermore, these contemporary occupations are related to two important aspects in the construction of the architectural urban landscape: the design of public spaces and the urban regulations. After the development of these social movements, in the last years different local governments have pushed considerably the implementation of public spaces privatization through the urban model "POPS: Privately Owned Public Space," and the elaboration of an architectural design manual of public spaces. These two tools are applied and reproduced systematically in cities geographically and culturally distant, pro consequentvokingly the construction of a homogeneous architectural urban landscape, displacing the local history and social dynamics, and manifesting the spatial and social control through architectural design. Facing this situation, this investigation poses new architectural practices of post-public spaces are projected as dissident actions that operate collectively, temporary, and intermittently.
  • Link: http://oa.upm.es/49062/

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