Digital Doubles: The Major Agency of Minor Bits

Lucía Jalón Oyarzun, A paradoxically accurate 43% of blurred uncertainty, 2022. Google’s Cloud Vision API applied to Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s The tower of Babel (c. 1563) confirms that there is a building in the image with a 57% certainty.

In a world that seeks to describe, codify and quantify everything, and particularly our viscerality and its interactions with our actual and digital environments, can we find interstitial spaces, currently unseen, unobserved and unlegislated, where we might be able to create minor architectures capable of blooming? Published in Architectural Design’s Special Issue:... View Article


STOÀ Journal Issue 05: Contributive Workshops

Bussigny contributive workshop, 2018. © ALICE

In his prescient 2019 work Capitalist Realism, cultural critic Mark Fisher used the film Wall-e to point out the interpassive quality of critique under capitalism, where we delegate on a work of art or a piece of technology the agency to perform our judgement on our behalf. The Pixar film shows the Earth as an... View Article


The Brooklyn Rail: The Expression of a Common Touch

Fragment of the circumnutation of a carnation’s young leaf, traced from 10.15 pm June 13th to 10.35 pm June 16th, from Charles Darwin’s The power of movement in plants.

In 1880, Charles Darwin published a collection of studies on the movements of plants. One of his experiments led him to describe a circular or elliptical movement with which the plant adapts to its environment, balancing out. He called it “circumnutation,” a kind of nodding around, and to see it, he did a pre-photographic time-lapse.... View Article


Seeing Like a City: el Papel de las Imágenes en Red en la Construcción de Inteligencias Urbanas

En su libro de 2016, Seeing like a city Nigel Thrift y Ash Amin consideran la ciudad como una entidad viva con capacidad de dar sentido, pensar, afectar y ser afectada. Para ello, la ciudad genera imágenes, ve y adquiere conocimiento sobre su propio funcionamiento. Trabajaremos esta idea desde los Estudios Visuales (EV) y sus... View Article


Codificación Urbana en Tiempos Computacionales: la Influencia de la Digitalización en las Formas de Inteligencia Urbana

La codificación urbana ha sido una constante a lo largo de la historia, diversos códigos tácitos o explícitos han configurado sus formas materiales y prácticas socioecológicas. Hoy, más de un siglo y medio después de la revolución del control que configuró económica y técnicamente las sociedades de la información contemporáneas (James R. Beniger, 1989) y... View Article


Windowish Practices, Unreadable Backgrounds and Raw Semiotics. Tracing Minor Architectures and Ecologies of Signs in Women’s Writing

Covers of the two parts

Minor architectures can be defined as an open set of spatial practices and know-hows based on the agency of bodies. While these practices escape representation, codification or measurement, they have a fertile relation with literature. After framing this relationship, we analyze the work of three women writers (Carmen Martín Gaite, Ali Smith and Toni Morrison)... View Article


Del Camino al Circuito: Semióticas de la Carretera

Tesla autopilot video

An architectural, technical and cultural analysis of the road as architectural entity. From the link between road, landscape and orientation until its transformation into a circuit where ecologies of asignifying signs nudge the vehicle and its passive passengers, we consider the role and perception of landscape, as well as its effects on the architectural agency... View Article


Code Poetry and the Production of Minor Architectures in Coded Environments

as·phyx·i·a by Maria Takeuchi, 2015

With the Internet of Things and the popularisation of AI, our living environments are becoming coded environments: every singularity is inscribed in its digital fabric. These informational media are “containers of possibility” (Durham Peters, 2016), shaping what’s possible and what’s not (to do, to build or even to imagine). As architectural production becomes information management... View Article


The Haptic Quality of Urban Sensing: from the Nudge to the Algorithmic Touch Manifold

David Simon, The Wire

Environmentality, as a new form of governmentality, works through an ubiquitous and distributed network of sensing and communication devices, simultaneously capturing and emitting information (Gabrys, 2014). Part of this environmentality works through the nudging of human and non-human bodies, creating an informational surround with the ability to move bodies, push them to action or inhibit... View Article


Narratives as Minor Architectures’ Repertoire: Affective Images and Haptic Architectural Visions

Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Children’s Games, 1560

“This was what literature knew, had always known. Literature tried to open the universe, to increase, even if only slightly, the sum total of what it was possible for human beings to perceive, understand, and so, finally, to be. Great literature went to the edges of the known and pushed against the boundaries of language,... View Article


Nothing but a few signs, like stars in an immense black night: clandestinity and night-faring practices in the Underground Railroad

Edwin Hergesheimer, Map showing the distribution of the slave population of the southern states of the United States. Compiled from the census of 1860. Washington: Henry S. Graham, 1861

The text focuses on how clandestinity, understood as the articulation of spaces of secrecy and invisibility, is traversed by a singular form of architectural knowledge centered on embodied practices. A set of minor know-hows playing with the lines of the visible world while understanding the material effects of individual and collective bodies, all founded on... View Article


Invisible Maps: Minor Architectures as Ecologies of Signs

Study for 'Blind Man's Buff' (1811), by Sir David Wilkie (1785-1841)

We cannot avoid the touch of the world. Presence emerges out of an ecology of signs; traces with different textures and surfaces that index any given encounter. That’s why we can think of embodied or invisible maps which are not drawn (inscribed) on paper, but on our bodies. They are affective images as Spinoza defined... View Article