17 de octubre de 2010

ruin academy

Without his ruins man is just a common ape.
Marco Casagrande

'Ruin academy', Taipei, Taiwan is an independent cross-over architectural research centre in the urban core -area of Taipei. The academy is run in co-operation between the finnish based casagrande laboratory and taiwanese JUT foundation for arts & architecture.

Ruin academy is 'set to re-think the industrial city and the man in the box'. It organizes workshops and courses for various taiwanese and international universities including the National Taiwan University department of sociology, Tamkang University department of architecture, Aalto University sustainable global technologies centre and Helsinki University of Arts and Design department of environmental art. The research and design tasks move freely in-between architecture, urban design, environmental art and other disciplines of art and science within the general framework of built human environment.

The Ruin Academy is focused in the research of the Third Generation City - the ruin of the industrial city. The research is done in collaboration with some Taiwanese and Finnish universities, groups and individuals with the Academy acting as a base camp for a series of workshops and individual works. We are a voluntary refugee camp within the architecture community. Architecture moving freely in-between environmental art, urban design, sociology and other disciplines of art and science. Maybe better call built human environment instead of architecture or urban design. Or just human environment.

The 3G city is an organic matrix of nature mixed with human construction. The balance of dominating the no-man's land is ever changing. Local Knowledge knows this. It is light on the surface but with solid roots. A city sweating humanity and constantly wiping the sweat away. The architectural control is in a process of giving up in order to let nature to step in. So far it is not giving up - it is too lazy. Architectural control will be given up. Modernism is lost and the industrial machine will become organic. This happens in Taipei and this is what we study. Ruin Academy is an organic machine.

The ruin academy occupies an abandoned 5-story apartment building in central Taipei. All the interior walls of the building and all the windows are removed in order to grow bamboo and vegetables inside the house. The professors and students sleep and work in mahogany made ad-hoc dormitories and have a public sauna on the 5th floor. The building is penetrated with 6 inch holes in order to let 'rain inside. The academy is
viewed as an example or fragment of a third generation city, the organic ruin of the industrial city.

project info:
500 m2 / 5 floors, 20 m deep, 5 m wide.
concrete, mahogany, white gravel, top-soil, 6 inch holes.
bamboo, taro, chinese cabbage, passion fruit, aspenium nidus, wild trees, ferns and undergrowth.

- blown open and filled with top soil.
- construction waste for a drainage layer.
- 5 olive trees.

1st floor, 'archive'
- 6 inch segments of the house on white stones.
- 6 inch holes in the long facade.
- mahogany bridge over the basement-hole.
- pile of dirt in the far corner with taro.
- fire-place.

2nd floor, 'student dormitory'
- mahogany sleeping unit for 4 students.
- working tables growing bamboo, mahogany.
- vegetable garden with passion fruit, aspenium nidus and chinese cabbage.
- 6 inch holes through the floor and ceiling.
- kitchen and toilet.

3rd floor, 'professor's deck'
- mahogany bed on wheels.
- bamboo growing through windows.
- 6 inch holes through the floor and ceiling.
- kitchen and toilet.

4th floor, 'lounge'
- stage.
- bamboo growing through windows.
- 6 inch holes through the floor and ceiling.
- toilet.
- fire-place.

5th floor, 'sauna'
- public sauna, all mahogany - best sauna in the pacific.
- chill-out room, white stones.
- showers with bamboo and taro.
- 6 inch hole.