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Surrender Resistance


SOURCE (n./v.) ‘that from which something comes’

Tutor(s): Thierry Berlemont and Guests
Semester: 1
Engagement: Mediating Tactics
Language: English
Campus: Brussels

Water Shop Uzbekistan, 2001

SurrenderResistance is a design studio centred on experiment and speculation. It proposes an extended moment of re-orientation or re-set at a critical hinge-moment in a learning process and aims at a reflection on critical points of architectural interest. The core of the studio’s approach is the relation of the student with a phenomenon, problem or experience, and its associated critical point or singularity, where known laws no longer apply, become extreme, or even contradictory.
This is expressed by the twin-concept SurrenderResistance that signifies an apprehension of issues from the perspective of ambivalence and paradox. It is joined by a partner-concept that provides topical support and an additional means for orientation, which during this year’s edition will be ‘SOURCE’.
Both constitute the reference for the calibration and balancing of one’s own position. This position is dynamic, but not pre-defined or pre-supposed. The studio aims at providing the space to let it take shape, grow, transform and mature within a process of questioning by means of design and making. A general question to consider is how we can, from an architectural perspective, give shape to something that we do not yet know or understand, but that is nonetheless critical and highly space-time oriented? How does this affect our perception of existing relationships, and how does it lead to new ones? How can we, by means of this process, reveal something crucial, necessary, helpful or relevant about and for architecture and architectural practice? Do we, as architects, have a responsibility regarding the issues under scrutiny, and if so, how can we contribute to them? Do we enthusiastically join a given movement or tendency, or do we interrupt it, build an opposition and join the resistance? It is also an opportunity for finding new sources, and r(e-)orient personal fields of interest or commitment towards architecture and society more in general.

The student generates and implements architectural topics and strategies by means of simulations and tangible
material installations. Those will be produced on a weekly basis and used as means of conversation and assessment
of ideas and proposals. The studio provides both a material and social space – including cooking and sharing the
table – for a process-oriented development that is organised in chapters:
– REVELATION: The excavation of themes
– IMMERSION: The intensive examination of the theme and the mapping of the field
– EXTRACTION: The extraction of sub-themes, existing or untouched, that show the potential to be developed more
in depth. This is named “X”. The extraction-phase leads to a first viewing halfway the semester to which external
participants will be invited.
– PRODUCTION: The speculative process of defining and developing the X
– RELEASE: This is the process of making public, i.e. delivery, disclosure and transmission of the newly projected
and constructed architectural substance in a spatial form still unknown and to be created.

The end of the process will be organised as a week-long residency in January at a venue that still has to be defined.
It will close as an exhibition that opens the studio to an exterior world and goes into conversation with it. This event
will take place at the site of residency on Friday evening.

A participation in the studio requires skills in expression, media, mixed media, techniques/technology, construction
and theory (of architecture). It also demands an open inquisitive mind, curiosity, a genuine dedication towards others
and to learning, an experimental attitude and a capacity to use design and making as primary tools.
Surrender/Resistance is part of the Master-Engagement ‘Mediating Tactics’, in which the discipline and practice of architecture, and the role of the architect in contemporary society, is questioned.


Surrender/Resistance is part of the Master-Engagement ‘Mediating Tactics’, in which the discipline and practice of architecture, and the role of the architect in contemporary society, is questioned.

Studio expo: Surrender Resistance 12/01/24

Welcome to the expo of the Surrender Resistance master studio! Students: Nena Mommaert, Loni Likar, Sara Vrbanac, Răzvan Cătălin Ploscaru, Jan Szeląg, Jesse Catteau, Anissa Boujemaa, Johanna Knigge, with support of Thierry Berlemont. Friday, 12.01.’24 18:00 – 21:00 Boulevard PACHÉCO laan 34, 1000 BXL https://www.blog-archkuleuven.be/surrender-resistance-23-24