An exciting new manifesto from the Why Factory, Porocity: Opening Up Solidity makes a case for the intervention of the public realm into the private sphere of the city. The Why Factory raises a critique of the city as excessively closed off, and offers tools for the prying open and aerating of the city in such a way that is socially, environmentally and economically valuable to its citizens. How can we introduce pockets for encounters, for streams of circulation, for green areas, for tunnels of cooling? What structures can be imagined to allow for this openness? Creating grottos? Splitting towers?
The Why Factory: The Latest Architecture and News
In 2020, the French city of Marseille is set to host Manifesta 13, the European Biennial of Contemporary Art. In preparation for the event, MVRDV has collaborated with thinktank The Why Factory (directed by MVRDV co-founder Winy Maas) in unveiling “The Grand Puzzle,” a 1200-page interdisciplinary pre-biennial research study of the urban potential for Marseille.
MVRDV produced the study through deep analyses of the city, such as interviews and spatial data, culminating in suggestions for possible urban interventions. As part of this engagement, the firm worked with The Why Factory, founded as “the think tank on the future city” at Technical University Delft, who collaborated with local architecture and design schools on the study. Having received overwhelmingly positive feedback, the work will now be “contextualized, analyzed, and refined as it becomes a tool for Marseillais to imagine possible futures for their city.” In addition, the study will serve as a point of inspiration for artistic and cultural interventions both before and during the Manifesta biennial.
Hoping to answer the question "what does the future city look like?" at Dutch Design Week, MVRDV (definitive design and construction drawings) and think tank The Why Factory (Research and concept design) have fabricated a multicolored, tetris-like hotel in Eindhoven. The future brings decreasing resources, increasing population, and climate change, reasons MVRDV, and with these limitations in mind, they believe futuristic architecture needs one important quality: flexibility.
Winy Maas is one of architecture’s most aggressive researchers. Through his office MVRDV and affiliations with universities in Europe and America, Maas produces a seemingly unstoppable stream of insights into the environments in which architects now operate. As an advisor to the educational program of the Strelka Institute in Moscow, the architect is currently contributing to the production of eleven radical visions of the future, based on extrapolating trends that shape contemporary life, in Russia and around the world. Maas recently sat with writer, curator, and Strelka faculty member Brendan McGetrick to discuss his unusual educational trajectory, learning from the conservationist Richard Leakey, facing death in Sudan, and the beauty of architects experimenting with algae.
By invitation of Director David Chipperfield, MVRDV and The Why Factory will participate in the 2012 Venice Biennale. The main contribution consists of the collaborative project ‘Freeland’ forming part of the single exhibition in the Central Pavilion at the Giardini. Further contribution is made by Winy Maas and The Why Factory with ‘Porous City’ to the EU CITY Program, initiated by the European Forum for Architectural Policies (EFAP) representing Europe for the first time at the Venice Architecture Biennale.
More details on the two exhibitions after the break.