(un)building Architecture?


  Marlene Wagner

#feminisms #postdevelopment #designresearch 

Following the guiding workshop questions of (un)learning Architecture? with a focus on the academic context and (un)doing Architecture? examining the profession's agency we will continue the discourse and design research for VASS 2024 with the question of (un)building Architecture?

The workshop is dedicated to building as a collective act of design exploring the intricate relationship of architecture, culture, art, craft, tradition and modernity and examines creative possibilities of unbuilding, rebuilding, building up, down and back.

The workshop will provide a framework through theoretical readings, joint exercises, site visits as well as a series of contributions from transnational positions. The starting point are shared stories, exemplary sources and post-development discourse. The understanding of building and unbuilding is further inspired by concepts such as reconstruction, regeneration, restitution, reparation and alternative approaches to architecture practice, construction and material. 

We will focus on the pleasure of producing and sharing experiences and knowledges, drawing on feminist, post- and decolonial theory as well as concepts of critical planetary practice. We will question notions of progress, norms and forms of violence within Architecture. We will investigate, apply and develop the guiding question of building and unbuilding Architecture through a series of approaches to re-imagine agencies and communities of practice. 

Together we will think, design and document a range of possible ways of knowing, being and designing space, drawing on the traditions of artistic and participatory action research, as situated, material and performative engagements. The aim is to equip all participants through the collective experience, critical reflection and theory in action.


Marlene Wagner practices, researches and teaches in the framework of "Social Architecture". Transdisciplinarity and transformation guide her work on space and design at the intersections of theory and practice, design research, feminist and postcolonial critique. As a co-founder of the non-profit architecture practice buildCollective she realised transnational projects of educational, social and technical infrastructures and has been teaching at Vienna University of Technology, University of the Witwatersrand, University of Art and Design Linz, Carinthia University of Applied Sciences a.o. She designs and develops formats of learning and tools engagement and has been instrumental in the set-up of an urban mobility lab. Marlene is part of the Claiming*Spaces Collective at TU Wien, the international research network Decolonising Development and co-founder of the Vienna Architecture Summer School. 


︎MEDIA: Body, text, analog&digital visuals, print

︎LOCATION: Main location

︎TEACHING LANGUAGE:  English & German (if applicable)

︎WHAT TO BRING: Notebook, mobile phone, camera, favorite pen and paper