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26 minutes | Sep 15, 2022
Architectural Workers Organising in Europe w/Marisa Cortright, Part 1
31 minutes | Aug 19, 2022
FURIA/ w Felipe Arturo
Listen to this episode and subscribe to the FA podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or Overcast. Continuando con la serie de conversaciones, podcasts y artículos sobre protesta y espacio público en Bogotá, la editora María Mazzanti habló con el artista colombiano Felipe Arturo sobre la exposición FURIA, Efectos palpables de los afectos (políticos) en los cuerpos (colectivos). La muestra busca documentar hechos históricos en Colombia, relacionándolos con el Paro Nacional a través de obras que resaltan la presencia del cuerpo, la memoria y la materia. FURIA Efectos palpables de los afectos (políticos) en los cuerpos (colectivos). Exposición colectiva y archivo documental, parte del ciclo: FIESTA, FURIA y FRACASO. Estados emocionales en épocas electorales Curaduría artística: Felipe Arturo Asistencia de curaduría: Andrés Suárez Diseño museográfico: Andrés Suarez y Felipe Arturo Curadores del ciclo: Ana María Montenegro, Felipe Arturo e Iñaki Chávarri Artistas comisionados: Estefanía García Pineda, Eblin Grueso, Carolina Fandiño Salcedo, Valeria Montoya Giraldo, Eider Yangana. Artistas invitados: Paola Pabón Bermúdez, Milena Bonilla, Gabriel Zea, Francisco Toquica, Katy Jiménez Calderón y +Voces Medios Invitados: Mosaico Documental con información de Cuestión Pública, Cerosetenta, Newsy, Vice, The Guardian, France 24, S.O.S. Colombia Cultural, Mujeres en ReExistencia, Deutsche Welle, Vice News, Canal 2 Cali, Temblores, El Espectador REFERENCIAS 1:59 Podcast: La Ciudad es Nuestra, La noche es Nuestra. Conversación con Temblores ONG 1.59 BB#22: Protestas en Colombia y Legitimidad Narrativa w/ Juan Corcione 1.59 Artículo: El Vacío de los Héroes por Juana Salcedo y María Mazzanti 1.59 BB#27: Huellas de Desaparición con Manuel Correa 1.59 Situation #9 Héroes en Disputa 25.32 Libro “Rabia: afectos, violencia, inmunidad” de Laura Quintana.
27 minutes | Aug 9, 2022
Stop Building Prisons w/ Sashi James, Maggie Luna, Avalon Betts-Gaston
Listen to this episode and subscribe to the FA podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or Overcast. For Breezeblock #30, editor christin hu chats with community organizers Maggie Luna, Avalon Betts-Gaston, and Sashi James about their recent action at HDR (Henningson, Durham, Richardson), one of the largest architecture firms in the world, who are responsible for designing hundreds of prisons. Together, they discuss the reasons why architects should refuse to take part in the building of prisons and what they can do instead. On June 24, The National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls, Families for Justice as Healing, Lioness: Justice Impacted Women’s Alliance, Design as Protest, Texas Statewide Leadership Council, and Illinois Alliance for Reentry & Justice organized an action outside of HDR’s office in Chicago (same day as the AIA conference) demanding that this international Architecture, Engineering, and Planning firm stop designing prisons (they have designed over 275). This marks just one of many actions inviting HDR to work with (rather than against) communities over the past years. Read the full statement of demands here and original letter to HDR here. Below is an edited transcription of the conversation. Some links and resources are provided at the end of the article. TRANSCRIPTION christin (CH): Hello and welcome to Failed Architecture Breezeblocks, where our editors share their thoughts on works in progress, urgent matters and current happenings in architecture and spatial politics. My name is christin hu and I’m an editor on Failed Architecture’s New York City team, and I’m here with Maggie Luna, Avalon Betts-Gaston and Sashi James, who have been organizing against the building of prisons. Maggie (ML): Hi, I’m Maggie Luna. I am in Texas. I work with the Statewide Leadership Council. I am a community outreach coordinator and lead organizer for formerly incarcerated people and advocates in Texas. Avalon (AB): Hi, thanks for having me. My name is Avalon Betts-Gaston. I am the project manager for the Illinois Alliance for Reentry and Justice. Obviously, we’re out of Illinois. We’re a coalition of directly impacted people, service providers, stakeholders and allies all united to remaking the criminal legal system. Thanks for having me. Sashi (SJ): Hi, I’m Sashi James, and I’m in Families for Justice as Healing, and the National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls. I am a daughter of formerly incarcerated parents, and I’m the Reimagining Communities director based in Massachusetts, but I’m from New York. And I’m really excited to be here. Thank you for giving us this platform. CH: Awesome. Just to kind of kick off our conversation give an intro to the folks who are listening in… On June 24, The National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls, Families for Justice as Healing, Lioness: Justice Impacted Women’s Alliance, Design As Protest, Statewide Leadership Council, and Illinois Alliance for Reentry and Justice organized an action outside of HDR’s office in Chicago, which was the same day as the AIA (American Institute of Architects) Conference. They were demanding that this international architecture, engineering and planning firm, stop designing prisons, of which they’ve designed over 275. So just to kind of kick off our questions here, and I’ll direct this to Sashi, who has been lead organizer for this effort, but since the action, have you been able to meet with HDR leadership at all? SJ: No, we have not heard anything from the HDR leadership team. And I just wanted to also say that the standout that we had was one of many standouts. We have come to their front door many times in Massachusetts – we actually organized about a two-month stand out in front of their office right in downtown. We never heard anything then, and we still haven’t heard anything now. And this is multiple times that we’ve actually met them where they’re at. So it’s disappointing as a community organizer. AB: I mean, I’d like to jump in, I feel like they’re being unresponsive to our invitation to work with us, to design things that our communities need. And the last thing that we need are more jails and prisons, because those have only really produced more harm in the communities that have been disproportionately affected by the building of jails and prisons. And so this has been an open invitation to begin to discuss what different looks like. How can we actually work together in concert to build communities up, and not prisons and jails. And so we can’t stop. This campaign, this project, this effort can’t stop, because we’re really talking about lives and liberty of actual human beings. So the importance of the stopping of designing and buildings of jails and prisons is, is vital to our communities. And so, you know, we will continue to put pressure on different pressure points in the industry. So we again, extended an invitation for HDR to come and talk to us, to understand what our concerns are and why we don’t need new jails and prisons to be built in our country. And their refusal to even engage in a conversation with us is really more indicative of them and the position that they’re taking, than of us, because we focus on harm reduction in every aspect. And so that is why we wanted to speak with them, to explain to them how this hurts our communities. And if their only consideration is how much money they can make off the caging of people, then that’s going to be their problem. We’re going to continue to put pressure on new architects, and students who want to become architects. We’re going to find and talk to everybody in this industry to explain to them why the building of prisons and jails is very harmful to communities, and specifically, communities of color and poor communities. And so their reticence to speak with us is not going to diminish our efforts in any way, shape, or form. CH: Yeah, I hear that. And actually, a lot of our audiences are young architects or, you know, folks who are entering the profession. So hopefully they listen in and hear this. It’s really important discussion. And on that point, too—I know you haven’t heard anything from HDR specifically—but perhaps you’ve heard other questions or oppositions? ML: I think the most common opposition that I hear whenever I bring this up in any conversation is, “Well, we just want to make it ‘better’ for women.” And that is aggravating because none of these people who have spoken to me have actually been inside of a prison, and there’s nothing that you can do. I don’t care if you give me Louis Vuitton sheets and house slippers, you know? I’m still in a prison, I’m still separated from my family, I’m still not being prepared with resources to reenter society successfully, and then I’m still going to have that stigma when I walk out that I have now a felony or whatever that I have to take care of. So, it doesn’t matter how pretty you make it, how many gardens you put on it. The fact is, there’s harm. And we’re doing harm not only to that person, but to the families. And so when you harm those families, you’re harming communities. At the end of the day, if you really say you care about community safety, then you should be focusing on investing in housing for families to stay together, so the communities can stay safe. CH: That point could not be emphasized more. It’s still a prison. And I’ve seen a lot of architects also labeling these as “justice centers,” or, you know, using these euphemisms, like “feminist jail.” I’m like, “Okay, well, look, it’s still a jail, right?” AB: And I’d like to add to what sister Maggie just talked about. So above and beyond the immediate and direct harm to the family—and therefore, by extension to the community—of removing someone, specifically people who the system identifies as women or who may self-identify as female, and putting them into these women’s facilities, there is one other glaring truth: the culture inside of these institutions is such that every single day, women are either witness to, or the subject of sexual, verbal, and/or physical abuse—and that is driven by the culture. There is no amount of paint, there is no amount of posh, and there is no amount of anything else that you can use to design away the culture. That is really the problem with the so-called “feminist jails” and “trauma informed prisons”. Using this language is to soften what these buildings actually are; because of that culture that is embedded in and cannot be taken out of those institutions, by paint, by design, by any of those things, because you cannot remove that—you [architects] cannot prevent the people who are housed in those institutions from experiencing that specific type of harm. So when you think about it, there’s no there’s no workaround for that cultural problem that is just pervasive in every single facility that houses women, or people who are nonbinary, or people who identify as women. And you don’t have to believe me, just do Google searches on how many prisons in Illinois or in the United States have had officers arrested as a result of sexual misconduct—that’s the most egregious one: rape and sexual misconduct. What’s not being reported are the everyday verbal and physical assaults that are happening, and so when you think about how much harm is committed inside of those institutions, I just need to really emphasize that there’s no designing that away, you cannot design that away. SJ: Touching on what Miss Avalon and Miss Maggie said is that, also, the prison or jail does not get to the root issue of why women are even getting inside of the prison in the first place. And then on top of not addressing the root issue of the harm that they already were dealing with, now it’s [the building of prisons and jails] only causing more harm to these women. And my issue with HDR is, when I was actually on the call when they were presenting what a so-called “trauma-informed prison” would look like, one of the things that stood out to me the most was that they are putting a nursery inside of this prison, and allowing women that are pregnant and incarce
27 minutes | Jul 27, 2022
On Discomfort: Episode 2 w/ René, Juana, María Victoria and María
Listen to this episode and subscribe to the FA podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or Overcast. For Breezeblock #29, editors María Victoria Londoño-Becerra, Juana Salcedo, and María Mazzanti discuss with FA editor René Boer his upcoming book: The Smooth City*.Framed in the conversations around discomfort and space*, the editors talk about how the homogenization of urban environments and the mechanisms that maintain the smoothness of the contemporary city remove the possibility for non-normative subjects to inhabit it. The conversation unfolds around topics of whiteness, public space, queerness and how to live together. REFERENCES Smooth City is the New Urban On Discomfort: Episode 1 w/ Juana, Maria Victoria and María
14 minutes | Jul 1, 2022
On Discomfort: Episode 1 w/ Juana, Maria Victoria and María
Listen to this episode and subscribe to the FA podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or Overcast. In Breezeblock #28, editors María Victoria Londoño-Becerra, Juana Salcedo and María Mazzanti introduce a new series of Brezeblocks about the concepts of comfort and discomfort and how they are entangled with dynamics of power and the production of space. Departing from Sarah Ahmed’s concepts, the editors discuss how the idea of discomfort is a productive place to delve into spatial politics and architecture. Stay tuned for the next episode of “On Discomfort” where we talk with editor René Boer about the Smooth City.
16 minutes | Apr 8, 2022
Huellas de Desaparición w/ Manuel Correa (Forensic Architecture)
Para el BB # 27, la editora María Mazzanti habló con Manuel Correa sobre la exposición Huellas de Desaparición en Bogotá.
61 minutes | Nov 15, 2021
#15 Design Justice w/ Quilian Riano
A conversation on design justice with Quilian Riano.
23 minutes | Nov 4, 2021
Stories on Earth: Rhino: An Alternative Story w/ Anna Maria Fink & Mizt aan de Maas
For Breezeblock 26, Eda talks to fellow editors Bassem Saad and Ameneh Solati about "Rhino: An Alternative Story" their contribution to the Stories on Earth project, Failed Architecture's contribution to the public parallel programme of the Dutch Pavilion during the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
18 minutes | Oct 28, 2021
Stories on Earth: The Great Reanimation w/ Bassem Saad & Ameneh Solati
For Breezeblock 25, Christin talks to fellow editors Bassem Saad and Ameneh Solati about "The Great Reanimation" their contribution to the Stories on Earth project, Failed Architecture's contribution to the public parallel programme of the Dutch Pavilion during the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
20 minutes | Oct 18, 2021
Stories on Earth: Sacred Planetary Garden w/ Karin Lachmising and Angelo Renna
For Breezeblock 24, Christin talks to Karin Lachmising and Angelo Renna about "Sacred Planetary Garden" their contribution to the Stories on Earth project, Failed Architecture's contribution to the public parallel programme of the Dutch Pavilion during the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
27 minutes | Sep 23, 2021
Stories on Earth w/ Chiara and Daphne
For Breezeblock 23, Charlie talks to fellow editors Chiara Dorbolò and Daphne Bakker about Stories on Earth, Failed Architecture's contribution to the public parallel programme of the Dutch Pavilion during the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
20 minutes | Jul 1, 2021
Protestas en Colombia y Legitimidad Narrativa w/ Juan Corcione
Para este Breezeblock (el primero en español) la editora María Mazzanti habló con Juan Corcione, publicista y académico colombiano que trabaja sobre cultura visual, teorías de la imagen y políticas del placer y el ocio. Juan ha venido reflexionando sobre las protestas masivas en Colombia que empezaron el 28 de Abril de 2021. En el podcast, Juan y María discuten sobre las dinámicas de la protesta y su influencia en la conquista narrativa de un país en conflicto, donde a través de imágenes digitales y la resignificación del espacio público los ciudadanos batallan por la legitimidad de un nuevo relato político.
62 minutes | Jun 2, 2021
#14 La Ciudad Es Nuestra, La Noche Es Nuestra
En medio de las masivas protestas sin precedentes que estallaron en Colombia el 28 de abril, el equipo de Failed Architecture conversó con Temblores. Esta ONG ha liderado el llamado a la reforma policial y ha abogado fuertemente por comunidades históricamente marginadas cuyo derecho a acceder y habitar espacios públicos ha sido persistentemente negado, criminalizado y sometido a la violencia policial.
20 minutes | May 25, 2021
Swarming the Red Light District w/ Floor, Tools For Action, Juli Salamanca & Papaya Kuir
This spring, FA initiated ‘Situations’, an event series aiming to take critical reflections on architecture and space from the digital realm to the real world. Breezeblock #21 was recorded shortly after the second Situation ‘Swarming the Red Light District With Sound’, when our editor René Boer hosted a conversation with some of the organisers and participants, at a moment when everybody was pretty excited and also somewhat exhausted after having been swarming around the neighborhood for the past hour.
19 minutes | May 18, 2021
Private Views w/ Andi Schmied
For Breezeblock #20, FA NYC editor Michael Nicholas spoke to Andi Schmied, whose book Private Views documents her experiences being shown around high-rise luxury apartments in New York disguised as a Hungarian billionaire. Through transcripts of conversations with brokers, photos of views not intended to be seen by the public, and a number of essays from contributors on the subject, the book illuminates how inequality is built into New York City's real estate market.
71 minutes | May 10, 2021
#13 Heroin is Everywhere Now, and It’s Everyone’s Problem
Popular culture has seriously obscured our idea of where heroin is produced, who uses it, how it gets to the places where it’s used, and why it ends up in these places… this episode of the Failed Architecture Podcast sets the record straight by tracing the drug's hidden historical geography.
26 minutes | May 5, 2021
Paint Your Town Red w/ Rhian E. Jones
For Breezeblock #19, FA’s Charlie Clemoes talked to Rhian E. Jones about Preston, community wealth building, and its capacity to radically transform our approach to development.
16 minutes | Mar 20, 2021
Radio Alhara, Sonic Space, Beyond Palestine w/ Elias & Yousef Anastas
For Breezeblock #18, FA organiser René Boer talks to the founders of Radio Alhara, architects Elias and Yousef Anastas, on the one year anniversary of their radio project. It was launched in Bethlehem at the start of the global lockdown and by now has become a sonic public space reaching well beyond the confines of Palestine.
15 minutes | Mar 16, 2021
Trad Day, Part II w/ Michael, Kevin + Joshua
In this follow-up of Breezeblock #15, FA editors Michael Nicholas, Kevin Rogan, and Joshua McWhirter dive into the weird world of traditional architecture revivalism, or ‘trad arch’ for short. Where the first part of this discussion focused on a critique of the intellectual undercurrents of the trad arch movement, here, the editors explore how the trad impulse folds back onto the real world, from historic preservation projects, to former president Donald Trump’s infamous, and recently revoked, executive order mandating a ‘classical’ style for government buildings in the United States.
21 minutes | Feb 22, 2021
On Political T̷e̷m̷p̷e̷r̷a̷m̷e̷n̷t̷ Action w/ Marianela D’Aprile
A few weeks ago, Yale Architecture professor Keller Easterling penned an article titled ‘On Political Temperament’, which became the subject of heated conversation about the role of architecture theory in discussions of politics. In response, Marianela D’Aprile wrote 'Not Everything is Architecture’ for Common Edge. For Breezeblock #16, FA editor Michael Nicholas spoke to Marianela and fellow editor Kevin Rogan about Easterling’s new book Medium Design, the role of architects as workers in the class struggle, and the politics of the architecture profession at large.
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