In a world that is missing a central theoretical voice in architecture, now more than ever it is time to solicit emergent voices on the topic of'alternative formalisms'(Alt-Form). This issue of AD aims to reach peripheral disciplines in order to support an architecture that no longer operates as a standalone field of study, and is rather one that responds to broader, urgent and pluralistic cultural shifts.
In the existing contemporary landscape of visually oriented fields of study, casual compositions and other formless expressions have begun to re-emerge, particularly in the disciplines of art, architecture and popular image culture. In architecture, with the rise of the digital, the last two decades have witnessed a field in pursuit of novel styles through the use of the latest digital tools. More recently, however, over the last five years or so, the field has experienced a more novelty-apathetic attitude, permeated with project proposals that resist the urge to offer immediate solutions in favour of enmeshment with a contemporary condition characterised by duress, destruction, uncertainty and other formless becomings. This AD explores this new, emerging world.
Contributors: Suzanne Cotter, Andrew Culp, Jack Halberstam, Jeff Halstead, Carolyn Kane, Ersela Kripa and Stephen Mueller, Carl Lostritto, Thom Mayne, V Mitch McEwen and Kristina Kay Robinson, Anna Neimark, Jennifer Newsom and Tom Carruthers, Dorina Pllumbi, Faysal Tabbara, and Dalena Tran. Featured architects: AGENCY, Architecture and Other Things, Atelier Office, Dream the Combine, First Office, MIRACLES, and Morphosis.
Viola Ago is an architectural designer, educator, and practitioner. She directs Miracles Architecture and is the current Wortham Fellow at the Rice University School of Architecture. More recently, Viola held the Yessios Visiting Professorship at the Knowlton School of Architecture at OSU and the William Muschenheim Design Fellowship position at the Taubman College of Architecture, University of Michigan. Viola has previously taught at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, Rhode Island School of Design Architecture, and the Southern California Institute of Architecture. She earned her Master of Architecture degree from the Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles, and a Bachelor of Architectural Science from Ryerson University in Toronto. Prior to teaching, Viola was a lead designer in the Advanced Technology Team at Morphosis Architects in Los Angeles working on international built and competition projects. Viola's work has been exhibited in Los Angeles, Boston, Houston, Ghent NY, San Francisco, Miami, Columbus, Ann Arbor, and Cincinnati. Her written work has been published in Log, Wiley's AD Architectural Design Magazine, Routledge's Instabilities and Potentialities Book, Sci-Arc's Offramp, Acadia Conference Proceedings, TxA Emerging Design and Technology Journal, JAE Journal, Architect's Newspaper, Archinect, among others. Viola held a digital fabrication residency at the Autodesk Build Space in Boston, a University Design and Research Fellowship with Exhibit Columbus, and an artist residency at the MacDowell Colony. More recently, Viola's work has focused on architecture's role in a world populated with forms of duress. Her personal experiences with the affective conditions of remnants of war has fueled her ambitions towards a design research project that looks at the aesthetic and formal agency of destruction through methods of perceptual mechanisms outlined by political theory and the phenomenology of empathy; and digital technological advancements such as real-time physics engines and production methodologies.