Colloque Architectural Models : Theory and practice in scale

Lundi 2 Décembre 2019 - Mardi 3 Décembre 2019

Campus HEAD, Design Room
Av de Châtelaine 
Colloque en anglais

Le discours concernant le rôle de la maquette dans la théorie et la pratique architecturales s’est intensifié au cours des dernières décennies. De l’exposition « Idea as a Model » à l’Institut d’architecture et d’études urbaines de New York en 1976 au travail de Thomas Demand, l’architecture contemporaine et les pratiques artistiques ont abordé des questions telles que la relation entre la condition d’objet et la nature représentative des maquettes, leur indépendance épistémique et leur autonomie vis-à-vis de l’architecture grandeur nature, ainsi que leur rapport au corps humain ou leur capacité à représenter visuellement l’occupation de l’espace.

Organisée par le département d’Architecture intérieure de la HEAD – Genève les 2 et 3 décembre, la conférence internationale « Modèles architecturaux : théorie et pratique à l’échelle » explore le rôle des maquettes dans la construction des espaces contemporains ainsi que les cultures qui s’y rapportent. En présence d’invités tels que Thomas Demand, Jonas Dahlberg, Thea Brejzek, Nadja Maillard, Socha Monteiro, Jill Gasparina, Roberto Gargiani ou Lilet Breddels, la conférence se penchera sur des questions d’espaces, d’activités ou de supports utilisés dans la confection de maquettes, par le biais de discussions ouvertes et de scénographies éphémères. 
L’évènement sera structuré comme un espace stimulant, conçu pour inspirer, stimuler et activer la réflexion et le débat. Les conférences feront l'objet d'un compte-rendu dessiné réalisé en direct par le designer graphique Thibéry Maillard 

Comité scientifique : Dr. Javier Fernández Contreras, responsable de département Architecture d'intérieur et Dr Roberto Zancan, professor au sein du département Architecture d'intérieur. 

Téléchargez le programme du Colloque Architectural Models : Theory and practice in scale ici

Lundi 2 décembre 2019

14:30 – 15:00 Scientific presentation of the conference
Javier Fernandez Contreras, Head of the department of Interior Architecture, Professor, HEAD – Genève  
Roberto ZancanProfessor, HEAD – Genève  

15:00 – 16:15 Pour une histoire des maquettes 
Michael Jakob, Professor, HEAD – Genève

16:30 – 17:45 Architectural Models and Archives 
Sascha Monteiro de Jesus, Coordinator Jaap Bakema Study Centre Het Nieuwe Instituut, Rotterdam, Netherlands

16:15 – 16:30 Pause

17:45 – 18:30 
Nadja Maillard, 
Scientist, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland  

Figures of the mise en abime
Now common, almost banal, the notion of mise en abyme – borrowed from heraldry – is a particularly subtle and relevant way to engage dialogue across scales, in particular between a building and its reduced reproduction, the model; but other “nesting types” will be explored during the presentation: literature, arts, cinema, theatre, graphic novels, advertisement… In addition to the iterations between large and small, there are clearly, in this embedding process, different “stories” included one into another that attribute reciprocal meaning to each other. 

Mardi 3 décembre 2019

10:00 -11:15 Staging the Future: The Model as a Performance
Thea Brejzek
, Professor, University of Technology Sydney, Australia  
This presentation examines the performative potential of the exhibited scale model and focusses on what the model does rather than what it is. It traces significant shifts in exhibited theatre and architecture models, from traditional iterative and representative scale models towards self-referential models in the 20th and 21st centuries. This research argues that models conceived not as developmental tools or persuasive representations but rather as autonomous objects possess agency and examines how such models are able to make valid statements about our cultural, social and political realities. 

11:15 – 12:30 Waiting for Mars, une maquette de maquette 
Jill Gasparina, Professor, HEAD – Genève 
The work En attendant Mars (2017), by French artist Bertrand Dezoteux is based on Mars500, an experimental simulation programme for a flight to Mars. Using scale-models of the original modules as stage for a video as well as puppets, the work shifts from the mission that is yet to-come to its simulation, and then from the simulation to its animated version. 

12:30-14:00 ​​​​​​​Pause 

14:00 – 15:15 Hybrid space 
Kai Reaver, Professor, OCULUS Osco Center for Urban and Landscape Studies, Oslo School of architecture and Design, Norway
The presentation argues that expected technological developments within mixed-reality challenge our understanding of foundational disciplinary terms such as “architecture” and “space”. Presenting experiments and research within AR, facial recognition, 3d-scanning, 5g positioning, and the ongoing development of the “smart-city,” the author presents a context in which architects, artists and spatial practitioners must mobilize their disciplines in defence of democratic, civil society - while simultaneously presenting the novel opportunities for human experience, cooperation between individuals, and new understandings of our environments that these new technologies may provide.  

15:15 – 16:30 Seduced by the Model 
Lilet Breddels, Art Historian, Director of Archis – a platform for architectural debate & research, and publisher of Volume Magazine, Amsterdam 
Breddels will talk about the persuasive, rhetorical and communicational use of architectural models. The model – on very different scales. As a tool to talk. 

16:30 – 16:45 Pause 

16:45 – 18:00 The cube: abstraction of a three-dimensional object through an orthogonally generated, complex space. 
Stefano Ferracini,
Professor, ESA Saint-Luc, Brussels, Belgium 
The exercise is an opportunity for first year Interior Design students to experiment with space and its dimensions, as conceptualised by the most important artists and architects of the first half of the last century. This is about managing constraints through a coherent composition, abstracting a real object and integrating it within a three-dimensional space. It is also about learning how to go beyond a concept and building a tangible, perfect object. With this meta-project, students get their first exposure to what interior design is about.  

Roberto Rizzi, Professor, Politecnico di Milano, Italy 
Thinking through Architecture. The model as a tool for learning and knowledge 
If for the designer, and the future inhabitants, the small-scale construction in a model is the anticipation, before the construction of the work, of making or enjoying architecture, for those who have to teach or learn it, it is a very effective tool for understanding the most intimate formal dynamics of an existing work (or no longer existing), of its reasons (the simply functional ones, and the more specifically constructive, material, formal and figurative) and of its meaning (that is its existence as a living being, because it’s meaningful). 

For many years in the Interior Architecture Studios of the Schools of Architecture of the Politecnico of Milan, an experience of analysis and reconstruction of historical interiors (in a long-term perspective) was completed, conceiving the construction of a scale model as the synthesis of a path of analysis and excavation in the work and its sources, a way of retracing its genesis using the same tools (interpreted in scale) with which it was conceived and created, to recreate, with a careful setting up taking into account measures and light, a punctual and immersive enjoyment and that, in the chronological sequence of comparison of different examples, would allow to capture permanencies and changes in the way of building the dwelling. 

Dafni Retzepi, Philippe Buchs, Arimna 
Cyril Dériaz, Thierry BuacheDériaz Buache architectes associés 

The Fragment as a Whole
Architectural models are necessarily subjected to some kind of abstraction, may that be structural, spatial, or material. Starting from this simple hypothesis, the discussion orients itself around the thematic of models as fragments of a more complex context and investigates their relation. Fragments of future buildings, mock ups, careful disposition of brutal materials, are all protagonists of a certain contemporary architectural reality. Referring to them as “still life”, “readymades”, “compositions” or “collages”, the architects are looking to expand their vocabulary beyond the limits of the discipline, suggesting a voluntary auto-referentiality of the fragments - and of the discipline itself. 

Collective discussion between guest speakers and young researchers 

18:00 –18:30 Pause
18:30 – 20:15 Campus HEAD, Le Cube Talking Heads avec Thomas Demand, Artist, Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg, Germany in conversation with Julie Enckell Julliard and Roberto Zancan, HEAD – Genève


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Colloque Architectural Models : Theory and practice in scale
© Thomas Demand, Backyard, 2014, C-Print/Diasec, 230 x 382 cm