Care. Emerging Natures: Research by Design

The work addresses research by design as a subject and a method. It explores theorizations, experimentations, and verifications, all of them engaged in writing, drawing and building. It is discovery-led, and starts from a blurry "state of the arts". It oscillates between architectural processes, products and performance without considering any of them isolated as research. Its relevance emerges. It is the design process that constructs, delimits the research corpus and produces architectural insight and knowledge. The first part addresses architectural meaning. It engages interdisciplinary connections: structuralism in linguistics and philosophy, color theory, and a displacement into deconstruction. It concludes that, although an architectural design process can deliberately try to produce and uphold determinate architectural meaning, such (objective) meaning is immediately deviated, notably by the appearance of architectural usages, scale, and possibilities of appropriation. The second part investigates deviation as a substantial part of architectural creation. If noise is irreducible, it must also structure architectural creation. It connects to domains resisting to reductionist thought: complexity sciences, literary critics, archaeological processes, and theorizations dealing with the secondary such as psychoanalysis and gender studies. The work is marked by a dilemma related to empowerment: the originality and authenticity of design and its delivery at a certain moment always seem to prohibit inhabitation, appropriation. The secondary, subject to dominant, single authorship, becomes primary. Architecture seems resistant to modernity in the Kantian sense. The work re-centers on psychiatry, gender studies and (health) care: the understanding of natures rather than appearance, structure or essence. In the third part, it moves from the production of difference to inscriptions of memories and future possibilities; from design as making to design as the initiation and care of a shared transformation process, accompaniment of differance. The understanding of architectural reality shifts from the finality of object to a process beyond control, co-construction between different authors/users occurring in minor events, in a very local and specific context. The work proposes a design process driven by care, encounter of authors and users in quality, accompanying different and specific emerging natures of (territorial) identity.


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