rr dialogues is the interactive research platform of architecture collective rotative research.
Our aim is to expand and exchange knowledge on a variety of architectural topics,
by inviting other voices from various disciplines to infuse our dialogues with their specialist expertise and personal approach.
Our current topic is Intentions in architecture. Navigate through the interactive index to find the ongoing dialogues!
Rotate and mouse over the contributions around the table to find the dialogues. Click on the dialogue title inside the circle to view. If you want to read more about the development of the topic, click on 'read more' inside the circle.
Dialogue 01 The image of promises
Transformation means alteration of something in space and time. Within the building environment, the temporary state of literally being ‘under construction’ reveals values that are often hidden once a project is finished. That is, the site exposes the intentions that motivated the transformation, the impact on its surroundings, a new materiality that contrasts with the previous one, and above all, the image of what is to become: a vision that is communicated on polished images on billboards aligning construction sites.
Since 2016 we have been observing several construction sites in a number of cities throughout Europe, to understand the relationship between intention and result, dream and material actualisation; from fiction to reality. The construction site is where the layers of past, present and future meet or contradict; laying bare a constellation of material redundancy of what was before, the intention of what is envisioned, as well as the raw and bare material reality of construction itself.
As much as the words and images on billboards reveal dreams and grand visions, as an image of promises within the urban domain, their smoothed surface barely covers up the very likely prospect of yet another project that fails to adjust to the local specificity of its context while casting itself into the mould of an increasingly homogeneous global architecture. Ever more technically advanced 3d renders make the architectural images presenting the envisioned end result increasingly realistic. Paradoxically, however, the resulting visuals also become more and more alike (and thus also less ‘real’), exposing a constantly returning same-like smoothed colour scheme, ever returning stereotyped figures draw to inhabit the space, gleaming surfaces of buildings and streets, and standardized accompanying texts.
These homogenized, standardized billboard images in fact mirror an increasing homogenization of global architectural trends at large – compelling us to ask whose dreams, whose and what kind of ‘utopian vision’, is presented. For as much as the architectural structure is presented as a promise, its semi- utopian picture contains within it the ‘distopian’ features of a non-space, of the ever-the-same or radical interchangeability that also characterizes much of our current global system.
Of course transformation is also change of meaning and use, and necessary to be able to adapt to the changing logic and needs of a society. However, global demands often contradict the local, historically grown logic of a specific place. And while grand and spectacular prestige architecture might seem to stand out, we raise the question if an architecture that blends in with its specific material context, could in fact be more specific than the interchangeable and non-localized (spectacular) architecture that we find part of the current global trend.
Dialogue 02 Replicas
SUBSTITUTION OF REALITY --- DEFINITION FO REPLICA - COPY - TO REPLICATE - TO DOUBLE (TO SUBSTITUTE WHAT IS THERE BY ITS COPY 1:1 - HIDING THE ORIGINAL OBJECT) this is not about transformation. not questioning IT DOESNT BRING QUESTIONS
Dialogue 03 The site as testing ground
TESTING ON REALITY FREE STANDING FRAGMENTS --- ABOUT the use of these infrastructures that are used as a method of publishing future buildings on site in real scale and therefore, using the city as a model. By studying this phenomena, we would like to question whether it could be used as a design method. on-site tools / 1:1 models simulation and context very close
Dialogue 04 Zero degree of architecture
NO SPATIAL IMPLICATIONS ...? --- projective image context relation zero degree of architecture
Dialogue 05 Language - Euphemisms
EUPHEMISMS AND REALITY - SEMANTICS - ETYMOLOGY - REAL ESTATE
Dialogue 06 What kind of spaces does society create?
What kind of spaces do our society create?
Dialogue 07 Time - Duration
HOW INTENTIONS ARE INFLUENCED BY TIME Time / Duration change of meaning and value
Dialogue 08 Journey of materials
Where does the material come from? How much material is needed?