Commons Re-Placed: Utopian Action Between Drawing And Building
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How can architects transform a place without making a building? Digging through and building upon a rich history of architectural utopianism, this study reopens questions and concerns from different avant-garde groups in Europe and the Americas, all of whom sought alternative ways of living. While many of these groups would draw entire new cities, megastructures, or hi-tech nomadic pods, some groups favored more active forms of representing their visions, including public performance, erecting temporary structures, or creating localized urban interventions. These latter activities, however, have typically belonged to the domain of art, its criticism and history, but I argue that such activities are intimately tied to architectural concerns and should not be ignored from within‘our’discipline. How then does architectural representation become a form of architectural action? This question is addressed in a series of experiments that attempt to reimagine an urban site in Austin, Texas, in such a way that offers new perspectives and suggest alternative atmospheres along public streets. By conflating the act of drawing and the act of building, the study hopes to expand both the social role of architects and the tools of representation at their disposal.