ARCHIPHOENIX - Faculties for Architecture has turned the Dutch Pavilion, at this year’s Architecture Biennale in Venice, into a weeklong stage for research and exploration and a debate platform focussing on the capacities and capabilities of architecture - beyond building. ARCHIPHOENIX takes the recent burning-down of the Faculty of Architecture in Delft as starting point for an exploration of what values to defend, what territories to explore and what practices to develop as an architect. The fire seems to open a new era, it gives the architecture community a chance to reposition itself and the opportunity to question whether thinking in terms of buildings is the solution to the issues and demands that we face in the near future. In short: the faculties for architecture, in the sense of its multiple capacities, powers, capabilities. A question mark rather than an exclamation mark.
While on the one hand, global pressures - massive population growth, economic instabilities, limits of the resources available, just to name a few - urge architects to radically reconsider their tools, products and models of working, a growing number of practices already showcase possible directions. How could they be made to work - on a scale that answers the challenges ahead?
The project focuses on five questions each architect encounters: WHY WE MAKE - beyond the profitable simplicity into the social sustainability, WHAT WE MAKE - beyond the artifact, HOW WE WORK - beyond the singular into the collaborative, FOR WHOM WE MAKE - beyond power to empowerment, and finally WHAT IT TAKES TO MAKE (AND UN-MAKE) - beyond the sustainable: challenging the flow of resources, materials and people. These five seemingly simple, yet essential questions, if put to face challenges ahead become serious issues for discussion.