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Architects Without Qualities

Master Studio, semester 3
Master of Architecture, Brussels
Pieterjan Ginckels, Brussels, 2022

Q: What do you get when Travis Scott Airbnb’s O.M. Ungers’ House?
A: …

In this studio, we focus on the complex impact of contemporary visual cultures on working±being. We connect the thorough practice of incremental conceptual work with the ominous but very pervasive culture of the (scroll)surface. What’s a Snowflake gotta do? We will recognize, embrace and design post-millennial ways of enquiry and action, to work in our time. We will merge into a collective, and absorb and radiate the complexities of being (anti-)architects, drowning in the surface. As we engage with our surrounding cultures, we will actively explore their underlying strategies and adopt them for our practices. These practices entail the ecologic, societal, political, technologic and economic role of architects, beyond a responsibility and relevance to the built environment.

The studio is an experiment in collective building, to embrace and engage in agencies that pierce the pictures of ourselves, our projects and our discipline. We phase as follows: SURFACE SCAN – SPEED TRIP – COLLECTIVE – PROVOCATIONS

We work as a collective in which smaller groups can exist, merge, multiply. The end result of the studio is the collective itself, established by means of a designed and executed project.


Paradigm Weekly provides new tools for new times. One instrument is SPEED TRIP, a field trip-performance that previously has been executed from Los Angeles to Beijing. As a SPEED TRIPPER, you embrace the superficiality you’re investigating, and you take selfies rather than samples. Field research becomes safari. To kick off the studio, we will design and execute such a performative study trip (location tbd collectively), and use its after-images to design speculative projects and corresponding attitudes.


Also, we will find accelerating confidence by designing our studio team itself – as a collective. We will learn to operate behind a mask, not to hide, but affording ourselves the flexibility of a persona, to explicitly provoke the discipline and explore alternative moods and roles for becoming architects.


We will work towards a final act of the collective, which will be executed in public. Online, IRL, hybrid, tapping into the networks of students, guests and tutors.


Paradigm Weekly publishes a Cool-Critical journal: MISANTHROPOZINE. Our studio work – our katalysing SPEED TRIP, our designed collective with its projects – may incite the future MISANTHROPOZINE ‘problem’.


PW Studio coincides with the Masters in Art & Architecture elective TUNING, its sister from another mother. Both share strategies and convictions, and combined could supercharge your semester.

#postmillennialstudio #performance #fashion #aesthetics #misanthropocene #radicalsaturation #speedtrip #questionsnotanswers #dondaism

Image credit: Isa Genzken, Untitled, 2015


You will participate in the learning environment of the Master of Architecture organised over the Faculty’s two campuses: Brussels and Ghent. Based on a highly interdisciplinary learning process of integrated research and ‘research by design’, students are expected to determine a theoretical stance on current issues with emphasis on facilitating, making and imagining, leading to relevant spatial interventions.
The PARADIGM WEEKLY learning environment responds to, and helps deepen the engagement of our Faculty with matters of Mediating Tactics: ‘Mediating Tactics’ is a critical reflection on and handling with architecture and its social, cultural or environmental role. This engagement explores ways in which architecture is an enabler and reactant in the complex reality of the contemporary use of space. ‘Mediating Tactics’ is critical towards the discipline of practice and reflects on the actual and pertinent role of the architect in contemporary society. As Sean Griffiths comments on the recent Venice Biennale: ”Privatisation, design-and-build contracts, framework agreements and other products of the neoliberal economy have ensured that control over the creation of today’s built environment is now in the hands of those for whom architectural quality is not high on the list of priorities.”

Studio description as pdf.