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doing with Cristina Suárez Herrero

(not build) France, 2016

Festival des Architectures Vives in Montpellier, is the opportunity to answer, through the real experimentation, to questions which often remain in a theoretical level. Having the possibility to work with the visitors allows us to observe the real relationship between people and their environment and to understand the impact that our work can have on the society. 


In addition, the nature of the courtyards of Montpellier is inspiring to us due to the ambiguity between the public and private sphere intrinsic in them, and the challenge we set ourself of regaining the symbolic significance of the courtyard as a social space of coexistence. 


Also the proposed thematic “Emotion” is very interesting to us. Can architecture itselves provoke a particular emotion? We think that architecture can work as a stimulus able to arouse emotions, but the emotion it selves will be defined through the combination of the space and the individual perception of it, that is, personal experiences, memories, cultural and political backgrounds influence the way we perceive our environment.  


For all of the above reasons, our aim is to create an installation that can host as many differents emotions as visitors, and at the same time, that serves as a tool for expressing them. Besides that, we wanted the courtyard to provide a space for social interaction and interpersonal expression.


The idea is to fill one of the courtyards with large-scale, different sized, light and resistant, colorful building blocks, and include the visitors as an active part of the project itself. With this giant toy, the visitors are invited to show, more or less consciously, their emotions while building forms, choosing colors and inventing uses for the blocks. 


We think that this installation could arouse many different emotions, like joy, curiosity, nostalgia, patience, but also frustration, shyness, fear and why not, also boredom!


A very simple idea that encourage people of different generations to share their time and thoughts, to yield, to help each other… in short: to coexist and create a community feeling that respect at the same time the intimity and individual expression. 


For us there are also two key questions in every project we develop: the value of transmitting, especially the youngest generations, the importance of being an active part of the transformation of their enviroments, and the sustainability. Result of this is an installation thought to continue his live in some of the kindergartens that the festival will receive. 

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