Shenzhen, China – December 2013
People in Europe are more and more interested in shaping their own surroundings. Self Building Building transforms the current top- down building practice into a more flexible system with a bottom-up and adaptive approach. How to create your own affordable building as an individual or a group without it being an illegal or unsafe structure. How to negotiate with your neighbors and collaborate with the local government. An international exchange on personal ways to create space.
Shenzhen, China – December 2013
Cities are filled with numerous – at first sight invisible – borders. Between rich and poor, between ethnic groups, between high and low, between dense and sprawl, in short between center and periphery. But who and what define these borders? Are they problematic? Do they tell underlying stories? Explore some borders of Shenzhen (Meilin and Dalang) with us and each other.
Mexico City, Mexico – December 2012
Megacities are filled with numerous – at first sight invisible – borders. Between rich and poor, between ethnic groups, between high and low, between dense and sprawl, in short between center and periphery. But who and what define these borders? Are they problematic? Do they tell underlying stories? Mexico City seems to be full of telling borders that generate ideas on the past, present and future of the city. There is the border of the former lake, the border of the public transport systems, the border of federal states, borders for legal abortion, and possibly many more.
Macomb County, MI, U.S.A – February 2009 – with Abitare and NAI
Macomb County, one of the suburban counties surrounding Detroit, is currently undergoing a process similar to the economic devastation that the Motor City has been experiencing over the last 40 years. Tax foreclosures, social fragmentation, budget crisis at every level of government, the fragility of the auto industry and a dearth of leadership have intersected to create a growing state of emergency. The current real estate crisis is hitting homeowners in Macomb County hard.
In the USA and beyond there is a desperate need to reframe the issues at stake in a creative and sustainable way. Which truths are becoming evident? Are we seeing the end of natural order of Suburbia?
Naples, Italy – February 2008
What are the urgencies and opportunities of these spaces in terms of design of social security and cultural sustainability, as well as housing and business?
Kabul, Afghanistan – October 2007
How do we know Kabul? As a city of warlords, a frontline, a zone of utter destruction caused by modern warfare, a place of religious intolerance, the capital that is painstakingly reconstructed while a war is fought in the south. Kabul is a far-away place, dangerous and hostile – this is our outsider’s point of view. Reality, however, is more complex.
Prishtina, Kosovo – November 2006
Beirut, Lebanon – November 2006
After destruction through war or any other inhumane deployment of technology, capital and energy, we are left with sites, minds and societies unbuilt. Leveled to the ground. Making room for denial, doubt and a divided society. Understandable but unacceptable. This condition needs those who dare to envision perspectives beyond the ruins…
Beijing & Shanghai, China – December 2004
Communism is a theory of the future. Capitalism is a practice of the present. Traditionalism is a longing for the past. We are used to make a choice between these three concepts, according to character and personal interest. But what if it all happens at one place, at one moment? What if we stand still and think about it in contemporary China?
Vienna, Bratislava, Ljubljana, Zagreb, Vilnius, Moscow – November 2004
Something of a profound change is going on in this world. Capital, resources, talent and markets are shifting eastwards. China, India and Russia are new tigers on the block. Europe is moving east as well, but not too far. The new borders are stronger than ever. How does it feel to physically cross these borders? What is happening at the edges of the New Europe? Are we facing the new challenges, and further, are we interfacing them?