The Architectural Association School of Architecture, the UK's oldest Architectural School and one of the first to abandon a curriculum-based system for one based on modules, has always been at the forefront when it comes to teaching and learning about architecture. Every year it organises Visiting Schools (the AAVS) which are about learning, exploring collaborating and experimenting with a diverse group of international partners to reimagine the shape form and expectation of architectural education. With 19 different programmes in 13 countries, Europe represents the most involved of the AAVS continents.
New for 2013/14 is Jorge Ayala’s first collaboration with Rem Koolhaas in Paris, and Sam Jacoby and Jasper Cepl’s one with the Oswald Mathias Ungers archive in Cologne; an extension to Alexandros Kallegias’s digitally focused activities in Patras Greece; the long-awaited launch of Mattias Gambardella, Massimo Santanicchia and Sigrún Birgisdóttir’s geothermal waterscape and landscape-based workshop in and around Reykjavik and Sue Barr’s photographic journeys in and around Lugo in Italy; ‘experience tourism’ in Slovenia with Aljosa Dekleva and Tina Gregoric and the final instalment of Medine Altiok and Stephanie Tunka’s six-part research-based workshop, Mittelmeerland, in the Port of Izmir.
The workshop nanoSLOVENIA.nanotourism focuses on the concept of experience tourism, allowing participants to engage in a wide range of projects, from site-specific micro interventions at a 1:1 scale to holistic strategies for existing contexts. Adapting to their specific setting, the proposals can materialise in actions or structures that are temporary or permanent, ultimately seeking to create a comprehensible, tangible and novel experience of tourism.
Within the contemporary economic realities, the workshop aims for small and smart solutions that rely on local resources, and seeks innovative design and financing alternatives that bypass major institutions and established spatial planning bureaucracy.
The workshop will take place at the Cultural Center of European Space Technologies (KSEVT), a bold landmark in the Slovenian village of Vitanje designed by OFIS Arhitekti and SADAR + VUGA that has welcomed over 25,000 visitors in its first year of activity.
nanoSLOVeNIA.nanotourism will collaborate with Ljubljana’s Biennial of Design (BIO.50) and its curator Jan Boelen, director of Z33 – House for Contemporary Art, in a multidisciplinary research that explores possible futures for design.
One of the biennial’s research topics, Nanotourism, will inform the workshop’s theoretical framework, presented and discussed at the opening mini conference of the workshop. Selected results will also become part of the BIO.50 exhibition and catalogue.
Z33 is actively collaborating in this novel tourism experience by curating the Dré Wapenaar – Treetents project in Borgloon in Belgium. These tents, something between a sculpture and architecture provide cheap accommodation for up to four people (two adults and two small children), hanging from a tree.