Most people focus on object and form. Not Keller Easterling. She’s drawn to the in-between. Challenging the binaries of formal-informal, practical-impractical, like-dislike, right-wrong, Easterling points at extemporaneous design thinking that works with potentials and indeterminate forms. In this frame, space is an informational system where discrepancies between what an organization is saying and is actually doing open new territories for design to intervene.
Informality can be interpreted as a positive quality hinting at individual freedom or even be romanticized as bottom up and empowering force. But informality as safety valve for a system that is not able to adjust to changing conditions smoothly and quickly enough is another matter.
‘Reinventing the fringe’ is a critical reconsideration of post-war urban areas on the fringe of nine European cities, viewed from the perspectives of sustainability, social cohesiveness, mobility and land use.
Jaap Bakema and the Open Society is the first extensive book publication on the Dutch architect Jaap Bakema, his ideas and ideals for society at large. Throughout the post-WWII decades Bakema was inspired to build for a democratic and open society. His body of work, his teaching and writing, and his international presence are testimony to the vicissitudes of the welfare state and the roles played by architecture and planning in its construction.
In collaboration with Volume, KU Leuven’s Faculty of Architecture, campus Sint-Lucas Ghent/Brussels, selected recent graduate projects and reflected on the underlying ambitions of the school. The result is ‘Doing It the Belgian Way’, one of the two inserts in Volume 50. The insert presents three perspectives: Embracing Complexity, Embedding in the Local, and Un/Re-Learning. The following text is the introduction to this third chapter.
While the Istanbul Biennial questions ‘Are We Human?’, Volume explores the post-human world of Artficial Intelligence and Machine Learning. It’s not about the future, not about promise, it’s very much about the here and now. Please join us coming Friday (October 28) for an informal gathering at Post Office, Rotterdam to exchange on this life changing topic.
To see housing as a fundamental human right is a relatively new concept with consequences for law, justice and politics. In issue 46: Shelter, Volume published Abla el Bahrawy’s quick scan of the first formulation of this universal right and its further development into an action agenda in consecutive UN-Habitat conferences to promote and secure this right globally.
‘To beyond or not to be’, our slogan over these years, has proven its relevance. By becoming the norm it’s topicality has been lost. It is time to move forward and take new directions.
Together with the International Master of Architecture of the (KU Leuven), Archis organizes a lecture series on the topic of Learning.
Photographer Steven Wassenaar his work on Paris’ slums has been nominated for de Zilveren Camera 2015. Steven made contributions to Volume, among which his article ‘Coping with Slums and Slabs’ for Volume #16: Engineering Society, which focuses on France’s urban policy towards slum-living.