Architectural Affairs
Architecture as a responsibility to be, exist and see
Porto, PT

Founded by Andreia Garcia (Porto, 2016), Architectural Affairs works the discipline of architecture in three dimensions – project, curatorship and edition. Together with an in house team, as well as external collaborators such as artists, sociologists and anthropologists, the practice is constantly trying to refine the best way to observe the world we live in.

The need to survive existence

After 35 years of building an assortment of exploratory trails for my sense of existence, sometimes with cities, sometimes with buildings, sometimes with human figures, I tried by default to react, considering the pressure from my PhD, a very important moment to devote time preparing something pertinent to the act of survival. The only possible way to save myself was in what was most fragile. There my ignorance becomes evident.

 

Transdisciplinary execution of an architectural vision

Basically, my daily exercise consists in trying to explain to myself why I am driven to consider certain subjects, values, examples, works, characters and ideals. In the infinite universe of being and inhabiting, our image of the world is in constant transformation and merely my thought is not enough. Thus, Architectural Affairs began four years ago, because impulses are limited to themselves when they bring only a vision, an image. I believe in a practice of architecture that is done in drawing, curating and editing; one that is done in collaboration with other studios, artists, designers, sociologists, anthropologists, researchers, etc.

 

Using time as a framework separate from reality

I believe we are infinitely minuscule. The pulverisation of aspects about the ways we inhabit, work, socialise and communicate and about the symbols and signs of the city, architecture and society are, with no secret, the sensible formula of souls with eyes and voices in a movement that is present with us on a daily basis. That is why the time taken to design a project doesn’t correspond to the time of a class at the university, nor to the time of a curatorship, or the writing of a text. Time is a frame in fine print that allows me to float over these new forms of making sense.

 

A diffused work structure

I work together with my team as well as with external teams. I concentrate energies, which move through history, stories and their people (which are also my people in Architectural Affairs, as in the Universities where I teach, or in the structures where I collaborate). There are no parallel times and the subjects infect each other.

 

Defining architecture as a way of being

I'm still not sure I know what it's like to be an architect. There's a limiting dimension when we're asked to define infinity. What I can say is that I studied architecture to be able to build imaginaries, dreamy worlds, to construct scenarios. Perhaps also for the same reason I have always understood architecture not only as a profession, but as a responsibility to continue to be, to exist and to see.

 

A new perspective through posing questions

Architecture must listen, observe, and feel. For this to happen, the architect must know how to see, read and listen to the world. Our goal is to know how to see, rather than simply looking. That means that we need to be able to raise the right questions. Our greatest challenge is to continue working hard to better observe the world, rather than aiming for it to observe us.

01Photography © Alexandre Delmar

03Photography © Fernando Guerra

04Photography © Fernando Guerra

IMG 8616
Image courtesy of Andreia Garcia

A0019 FotografiaTomOriginal 02jpg ph
Image courtesy of Andreia Garcia






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