Exploring and Exploiting Coexistence
Master Thesis in Urban Design 2016 – Universita’ degli Studi di Roma Tre
The project is developed in the canal area of Eindhoven, a small but smart city located in the South of the Netherlands. The idea was born after analyzing the trends and development of this city and, after noticing that the are many startups and co-working places that are developing now and in the future, the object was to interpret this elements and insert them in an industrial area that is being slowly abandoned. The project established itself in the Campina factory (an important dairy producer) and exploits the idea of co-working and co-living in a critical way. In fact the project, which architecturally resembles the image of old industries, is a critical view on this global phenomena which is developing in these years. It’s wants to represent the obsession of these times and of the future ones, where the actors, the generation y, are represented by a precarious social class, subject to work and live in the same unconfined and scattered places; places which were the emblematic case of labour and manual work but that today, being slowly left behind, are redeveloping to embrace the new working era, the post capitalism era. It’s thanks to this analysis that the new Campina was born, a place of coexisting where people work and live in the same spaces but at different times and in a relative autonomy from one another.
Who influences you graphically?
During my studies I always searched for the right influences that would be more appropriate to express the feeling or the idea that was in my mind. In this case I wanted to recall a glimpse of a vintage feeling in order to express a near by future so the the pool of images was wide and vast. After deciding to also represent elements with an industrial character the search was precise. Something that would express the feeling of lived, mono material and industrial atmosphere. So I was able to take elements from different architects, from the pillars of architecture such as the drawings of Mies Van De Rohe and the ones from Superstudio, Archigram and OMA to the younger ones like Christian Kerez and Italians Baukuh. Also a big influence was the works of students posted on websites and so forth and especially the works of the students from the masterclass of Pier Vittorio Aureli at the AA school. I strongly believe that learning from each other is a great way to grow as an architect and an artist so being able to see the work of young and emerging architects is truly inspiring.
Your proposal seems to be very energetic and full of promise, how does this atmosphere clash or is supported by the use of a heavily monochromatic palette?
The goal was to be full of hope but always maintain a critical and objective view. Also the way the world is making this co-working a fundamental element for the generation of freelancer produces a new economic market, a production of elements in a serial way which also will embrace architecture. In fact the same project wants to be almost an obsession, a chain reproduction object made in ford-like industry, an emblematic case of an old economy ready to insert the producers of the new economy.
How would have a wider use of color helped in portraying this collective new way of living where everyones identity is cherished and not annihilated?
Probably a wider use of color would have enhanced a feel of warmth and I would have probably used the people, instead of in black and white, in color, in order to express that the people are the actors that governate and generate a hopeful living space. They are what makes the difference, creating a place of sharing and caring. For the rest, as i explained before, the architectural object needed to maintain a mono thematic scheme and representation in order to express the idea of an industrial object.
What is the purpose in featuring hulk, air balloons and or space ships? How does this relate to the proposal?
The mixture of these elements wants to represent physically this idea of hope and criticism, of a future that needs to be better but at the same time that has a bit of anxiety because we don’t know what this new world could cause in terms of living and working. Also these elements don’t necessary need to be disruptive but maybe could be co-living peacefully with inhabitants of the project. In the end these elements want to create a discussion in the viewers, an interpretation, an idea…the same feeling that the project wants to embrace.
You explore your proposal through all means of representation, do you trust that only through this is it possible to fully explore a project? Is one drawing more significant than another?
I strongly believe that a project should talk on its own through the drawings but I think that sometimes an interior idea and explanation is not always understood with a simple representation. It’s in our own power and determination to learn and better ourselves in order to be able to communicate just thought the sheets the real communicative message of the project.
The idea was expressed in the image of the perspective section. This drawing wants to represent the whole meaning of the project. Here you can read the role of the industrial heritage and the industrial image that the building wants to portray. Also you can see the working and living conditions. In the ground floor a condition of co-working and sharing public space in a hopeful way, on the first floor you you can see the role interpreted by the freelancers, working, living and dedicating the time to themselves in a small and isolated environment.
How does the circular format differentiate that image and why?
The circular element wants to embrace in one perfect form the idea of the seriality and obsession of the new living units. With this drawing, I wanted to extract the real idea of these living units that are confined without a specific character, the people living in these units will be the characterizing elements and meeting the other they will create a unique and particular net of knowledge and ideas that will flow in the anonymous architecture which will not take creativity away from the inhabitants.