Jose Luis Vallejo will be giving a lecture next week at the ia&l (Institut für Architectur und Landschaft) from the Graz University of Technology. He will also take part in the “Urban Legends” workshop as a guest:
November 22, 2012
Today, Thursday Nov. 22nd is the official opening of the exhibition Importing Architecture at the NasjonalMuseet of Art, Architecture and Design in Oslo. The exhibition will be open to the public from tomorrow until April 2013.
Ecosistema Urbano team is pleased to be part of this exhibition with Dreamhamar project, a collective dream to redesign Hamar’s main public space, Stortorget. Other architecture offices included in the selection are: Steven Holl, MVDRV, Peter Zumthor, Renzo Piano, Vandkunsten, JDS, etc…
Here is the introduction by the curator of the exhibition, Eva Elisabeth Madshus:
An increasing number of foreign architects are winning competitions or receiving commissions in Norway. The exhibition takes up this relatively new and interesting development, which is primarily due to the introduction of the EU directive on competitions and more building activity in Norway than the rest of Europe.
This exhibition presents a selection of foreign architectural firms with projects in Norway. It also provides the basis for examining what this increasing internationalization means for Norwegian architecture’s identity and quality.
– Are foreign architects reinforcing the trend toward a type of globalization that is dissolving national and cultural differences? Or are they even more concerned with formulating a Nordic or Norwegian identity than their Norwegian counterparts?
– Is it possible for an architect to create exceptional architecture in Norway without firsthand experience of Norwegian society, building traditions, climate or the natural environment? Or on the contrary, do foreign architects bring new ideas and ways of thinking that enrich the quality of Norwegian architecture?
– Do the EU’s competition regulations, with their criteria for participation and ranking, ensure that the best architectural projects win? Or are foreign architects displacing their Norwegian counterparts in today’s highly competitive building market?
Debate about foreign influences on architecture is not entirely new. Craftsmen from the continent were involved in building Norwegian mediaeval churches, and after the dissolution of the union in 1814 the country’s new institutions were by and large designed by Danish and German architects. But since the beginning of the 1900s, once architecture was an established course of study at NTH (Norwegian Institute of Technology; today the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim), Norwegian architects have been responsible for the vast majority of building works in the country. It was not until the EU competition regulations were adopted in 1994 that foreign architects began to make inroads in the Norwegian market, and the trend has been sustained by the country’s strong oil-driven economy and numerous public sector building projects. In 2012 the results of these factors are striking: a dozen public building projects designed by foreign architects are either in preparation, under construction, or completed.
The architects included in this exhibition are consummate professionals. Their projects reflect exceptional quality at every stage – planning, design, choice of materials, execution – and many of them will become important sources of inspiration. Norwegian architecture is well served by intensified international competition. Every good architect can acquire competence about the particular context that a building project is always a part of, regardless of national origin. Thus, increasing globalization need not lead to uniformity in architecture.
November 7, 2012
Belinda Tato and Jose Luis Vallejo will be teaching at the Master in Work Space Design organized by the IE School of Architecture and Design, which will take place next year. They will be conducting the Design and Technology Lab with attended sessions in London and Madrid and on line sessions during winter 2013.
‘The Master in Work Space Design is a pioneering program based on analyses, skills and strategies for understanding and proposing creative ideas for the changing work place. The complex issues affecting the work environment, business and the individual today must take into account changes in technology, new forms of communication, increasing globalization, sustainability and of course, stakeholders’ expectations. Within the Master of Work Space Design all these issues will be explored and the most innovative solutions will be developed’.
Next you can see the prospectus of the Master:
There will be a roundtable next November 23 at RIBA, London, with the topic ‘What’s next in workspaces; designing with change‘.
November 5, 2012
On November 15th-17th leading architects, artists, scholars, and industry from all over the Globe will meet up in Aarhus, Denmark to shape the media architecture of the future, and to discuss how media architecture is about to change cities.
What happens when heat sensitive concrete ‘freezes’ the shadows of passers-by, or when a façade turns into a screen by means of thousands of tiny LED lights? What happens to architecture, people, and cities, when buildings turn into a type of digital media and allows citizens to communicate with each other in completely new ways?
Questions like these are increasingly relevant, as media architecture gains ground in cities all over the world. And they will be top of the agenda when media architecture experts meet up in Aarhus in November. Among the speakers will be media artists Ben Rubin, architect and designer Jason Bruges, Bjarke Ingels Group, Gehl Architects, professor of architecture Antonio Saggio, professor of media archaeology Erkki Huhtamo – and many more.
You can still register until 8 November 2012. Just a couple of days left!
July 11, 2012
June 27, 2012
Ecosistema Urbano has, together with the Norwegian architecture office 70°N arkitektur, the Danish landscape studio Kristine Jensen, the Swedish lighting firm Ljusarkitektur and Atkins engineers, been prequalified for the planning competition in Kiruna, Sweden.
Kiruna kommune has shortlisted 10 international teams —out of 56 that were applying— for the next phase of the competition.
It’s an unusual, but very interesting challenge the Municipality of Kiruna is facing after more than a century of mining by the LKAB company. The ground is becoming unstable as some of the main tunnels are localised right underneath the city, so the city centre and all other areas affected will have to be relocated. In a time frame of approximately 20 to 25 years, some 400,000 sq. m. of housing and non-housing development will need to be replaced within the forecasting line of LKAB’s next main level, 1,365 metres below ground.
The aim for the competition is to create a sustainable, distinctive and pleasant urban environment, a city centre linking together surrounding housing and industrial areas with the whole city and constituting the natural hub of the new Kiruna. This is an opportunity for creating something completely new, emanating from Kiruna’s unique history, to accommodate future needs and the desire for good living in an Arctic climate.
We are very excited to start working with the other firms in our team in this competition, and we look forward to develop the future Kiruna during autumn 2012.
June 12, 2012
Ecosistema Urbano will lecture next Thursday in Tromsø, a city located 1.643 km north from Oslo. The lecture is hosted by the North Norwegian Architects Association and will take place at Drivloftet, starting at 8.30 pm on Thursday, 14th.
I will present Ecosistema Urbano latest works, including dreamhamar, the project we are currently developing for the main public space of Hamar, Norway.
By the way, this is the further north I have ever been to… I guess their summer is different from ours.
April 9, 2012
The Pavillon de l’Arsenal has invited fifteen European agencies —including Ecosistema Urbano— that question the way that modern-day cities are built to participate in an exhibition that will be opening this wednesday in Paris under the motto “RE-cycle, RE-use, RE-invest, RE-build”.
We are very glad to be there among such a great selection of agencies and collectives (some of them featured in our recent series about placemaking) that share the same interests and explore similar approaches while working in quite different contexts.
A quote from the exhibition follows:
In Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels, London, Madrid, Paris or Rotterdam,… these extraordinary teams have taken up a critical stance. They admit to exploring the role of architecture in societal changes. They are pro-action and produce and often even build their projects themselves. The practices are promises which revive long-forgotten utopian ideals.
They all invent wonderful standards and approach the complexities of modern life with the ability to transform into reality the potential that lies at the crossroads between experience and the built-up world. They are pragmatic, good at conveying their message and tend to work with the existing residents and for the inhabitants of the future.
The thirty exhibited proposals, shown at the various stages of development, describe the conditions in which the orders were placed, the study behind the projects, participative action as well as the conditions in which studies were carried out and the projects completed. Each proposal is thus presented through videos, drawings, interviews, plans and photographs to provide the public with an idea of the innovative and experimental nature of their research. Whether temporary or permanent, these projects are perfectly in line with the times and do not create extra constraints which could limit future choices.
We highly recommend you to visit the exhibition if you can, and to have a closer look at the work of the rest of the participants:
AAA – Atelier d’Architecture Autogérée (Paris), Andrés Jaque Architects (Madrid), Assemble (London), Bruit du frigo (Bordeaux), Collectif Etc (France), Coloco (Paris), DUS Architects (Amsterdam), Exyzt (Paris), MUF architecture/art (London), Practice Architecture (London), Raumlabor (Berlin), Rotor (Brussels), ZUS [Zones Urbaines Sensibles] (Rotterdam), 1024 architecture (Paris)
March 15, 2012
Next week Belinda will be sharing our experience around the dreamhamar project at a lecture day in Gjøvik organized by the Norwegian Landscape Architects Association and entitled “Nytt djervt frekt”, which means something like “New bold persistent” in english. Three keywords that describe a certain approach to landscape architecture and urbanism.
There will be two lectures on Friday 23 about dreamhamar:
11:50 – DreamHamar!
By city manager Kari Nilssen and city architect Geir Cock, from the Municipality of Hamar
Main square in Hamar: What happens when a foreign group works with ideas of local citizens? Why is everyone inside the process positive and those who are outside of it, critical?
12:20 – DreamHamar and Ecosistema Urbano
By architect Belinda Tato
How does the bold Spanish company Ecosistema Urbano work?
We hope to meet you there!
February 21, 2012
The workshop, which is open to both architecture students and general public, will take place around Bab al Bahrain (Gateway of Bahrain) on Friday 24 and Saturday 25. During these two days we will try to approach and visualize the identity of the city from the point of view of the citizens, with the aid of the whatif web and mobile application [Edit 2015: now called local in]. We are looking forward to meet you there!