Book Chapter "The Pursuit for a 'Change of Life:' Pedagogical Experiences, Poetic Occupations and Historical Frictions"
Published in Building Cultures Valparaiso (Laussane: EPFL Press and Routledge, 2015)
Architecture pedagogy continuously revises the tools and protocols of the discipline, and it simultaneously considers its diverse agendas and goals as well. The pedagogy of the Valparaiso School directly addressed this conundrum, explicitly rejecting with its methods of architecture production any attempt to “change the world,” and was otherwise guided by a pursuit for a “change of life.” Their proposed exercises and architectures did not advance any material form of engagement with their historical context, but sought a different productivity for architecture with forms of expression that could overcome this context.
With this particular aim, poetry's relation to architecture was explored as a strategy to set in friction processes of artistic synthesis with the experience of the city. Sites were occupied as playing fields in which the movements of bodies, their appearance in public, their formal arrangement in space and other artistic and architectural strategies were disengaged from any goal beyond them. Such an approach to architecture was thought to charge spaces with meaning and to open them to the production of new subjectivities. In fact, through different poetic acts and performances a new form of productivity was sought for architecture in the relation to different forms of expression and the occupation of spaces. The development of the Valparaíso School's agenda inevitably brought to the fore the tension between a quest for newness in its forms of expression and the unfolding of historical events. This tension became clearest in the 1967 protest in Valparaiso, which this research project addresses and evaluates.
This research is part of the collective research project Radical Pedagogies, and results from archival research in Santiago de Chile and Valparaiso, funded by the Program in Latin American Studies at Princeton University.
Building Cultures Valparaiso (Laussane: EPFL Press and Routledge, 2015), including:
I. G. Galán, "The Pursuit for a 'Change of Life:' Pedagogical Experiences, Poetic Occupations and Historical Frictions"
B. Colomina, I. G. Galán, E. Kotsioris and A. Meister "Radical Pedagogies. Notes Toward a Taxonomy of Global Experiments"