Notions on Architecture, Art, and Academia.

 

Contemporary cultural congestion defines the individual experience, at the beginning of the 21st century, as a result of coexisting with a series of dichotomies such as: global / individuality; subjectivity / inter-subjectivity; rationality / irrationality; end of history / genealogy of history, etc.Fundamental works of Architecture and Art, those which still have a place in historic memory despite the time elapsed since its construction, are those who managed to integrate the spirit of its time with tradition and cultural specificity, those who managed to merge established tectonic and spatial values with individual creativity, and created a dialogue of coincidence of local and foreign aspects, new and existing conditions, merging the present and the past at a particular moment. Architecture and Art are generated from a series of events in various social levels, and being Architect involves a global awareness of the movement of these events. Making Architecture means, among other things, to articulate the different dimensions of society at a particular time. Octavio Paz says …” To be truly modern, we must first encounter with our tradition …”

Architecture operates in different layers, it is a discipline that combines experience, image, concept and use, and by definition involves the outside projection of image with interior, psychological space and the notion of collective. One of the conditions inherent in being an Architect is the search for innovation. It is there where much of its spirit exists within the condition of a globalized world. The Architect must be an enhancer of ideas at all levels and a visionary, that projects into the future meaningful concepts that become concrete realities, not only as visual constructs, but also as social fabrications.

Architectural space / social space

Based on the notion of social innovation, we can develop urban/architectural strategies and dynamics of participation and interaction in the city, that value personal and collective identity through experimentation of new tools and processes of information extraction. Based on action / cooperation strategies each individual can interact as a transformer agent of his/her environment, in which an Architect acts as an orchestra director. Social innovation proposes the development of experiences in the construction of society, conceptualizing the inclusion of identity, specificity, heritage, and local/global industrial mechanisms as re-activators of the territory from both domestic and collective space.  It focuses on architectural / urban space through notions of “text” which can be “read” from the analysis of both social, and spatial aspects.

Teaching Architecture, in general terms, should be guided by ideas that reflect different aspects of contemporary cultural, social and technological dichotomies, which establish links between academia and society.  These changes represent a singular point of view regarding the relationship of Architecture with other disciplines, which generates the process of creation and transformation of space, – the social.   Exposure to visions that allow questioning aspects regarding an approach of teaching Architecture and consequently the production of space, is one of the premises proposed in my experiences in design, theory and art studios, which aim to be a place of exploration and invention, as a kind of theatre where the city and culture are put on scene, in which the role of Architecture/Art and their learning process is questioned in terms of the elements and strategies that generate them.

Alejandro Borges

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