ADS10: Savage Architecture: Building Common Knowledge

Lucy Stone

Working by Learning: From Kibbutz to Techno-Communitarian Landscape

Project Statement :

Founded over one hundred years ago by Eastern European Jews migrating to Israel, the Kibbutz was originally a rural settlement, socially and spatially organised to realise communitarian and socialist values. However, following the national financial crisis of the 1980s, the socialist ideals of the Kibbutz petered out under the pressure of neoliberalism, global capitalism and High-Tech production. Today, much of the economy of the Kibbutz is derived from technology businesses involving multinational companies such as Microsoft and Intel. The radical shift of the Kibbutz from rural commune to pastoral suburb epitomises the ambiguity of the sharing economy, suspended between egalitarian ideology and ubiquitous exploitation of labour.

However, the proliferation of the High-Tech industry also offers an opportunity to promote inter-ethnic relations in Israel. The sector is facing a talent crunch, with 20,000 open vacancies, but only a small proportion of Israeli Arabs employed in this field. Such gaps in the labour market have pushed some Tech companies to express the will of investing in mixed educational facilities to provide dedicated training.

Critically addressing such conditions, the project proposes an inter-ethnic school of technology based on the reinterpretation of the traditional Kibbutz and its recent evolution. The paradigm of the School proposed by ADS10’s brief is pushed to its extreme consequences. As the High-Tech industry puts to work precisely the most generic common faculties of thinking, relating and making: in the so-called sharing economy, teaching, learning, working and recreation become declinations of the same mode of production.

Within this condition, the environment constructed through architecture and landscape becomes a key factor in production. From this perspective, the Kibbutz offers an extremely relevant example, as its landscape played a crucial role in mediating individual and collective relationships.

The project reinterprets the landscape as a smooth and pervasive pastoral-technological space that envelops and glues together architecture. By contrast, the architecture of the school emerges from the uncanny encounter between a careful composition of small pavilions and the imposing presence of a large industrial cover. In the tension between these two elements the distinctions between natural and artificial, agrarian and urban, leisure and work, private and shared, are subtly and continuously exposed through the landscape, to suggest a new form of life.

Tested in the Galil, where Kibbutzim are experimenting in partnership with Arab-Israeli towns in the production of bilingual educational systems, the project has the ambition to be a paradigmatic example for inter-ethnic relationships in the region.

MA Architecture

ADS10: Savage Architecture – Building Common Knowledge

Tutors: Gianfranco Bombaci, Matteo Costanzo, Francesca Romana Dell'Aglio & Davide Sacconi  

Contact

lucy.stone@network.rca.ac.uk

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Degree Details

School of Architecture

Lucy studied her BArch(Hons) at the University Of Nottingham before completing her MA at the Royal College of Art.

Lucy has spent three years in practice, working on a wide range of projects, including private/commercial residential, urban planning, leisure and education. She has also worked on independent residential projects. 

Lucy has a keen interest in history and theory. Her MA work has consistently explored the understanding of past planning typologies and their sociological and political implications as a means to define future space. Lucy intends to continue this research and hopes to pursue architectural design in the realms of Urban Planning, Social Policy, and Urban based projects.

Lucy was based in London in 2020, her hometown. In the immediate future, she intends to remain in the city and continue working in the practice of Architecture.

 

Axonometric - A Techno-Communitarian Landscape

The School of Technology uses architecture and landscape design to experiment with notions of radical sharing and openness, inspired by the spatial and social principles of the Veteran Kibbutz. High-Tech education and its architectural manifestation are an opportunity for cooperation between the neighbouring Kibbutz and Israeli-Arab town. The project relies on the tension between the divergent archetypes of the Pavilion and the Cover, bringing together the agrarian nature of the Kibbutz with the industrial and technological character of the large-scale roof. These two poles frame the notion of sharing in the shift between the rural and knowledge production.
Agrarian
Agriculture
Collective Ritual
Communitarian
Galil
Garden
Inter-ethnic
Kibbutz
Pavilion
Savage Architecture
School
Technology

The Commercialisation of the Kibbutz

The Commercialisation of the Kibbutz

Spatial Principles of the Veteran Kibbutz

Spatial Principles of the Veteran Kibbutz

The Commercialisation of the Kibbutz

The Kibbutz economy was once firmly rooted in agricultural production, as a tool to fund and solidify its ideological aspirations of a shared society, underpinned by socialist principles. However in the last decades, while the socialist ideals of the Kibbutz petered out under the pressure of neoliberalism, much of the Kibbutz economy embraced capitalism and the technology businesses involving multinational companies such as Microsoft and Intel. The project investigates the radical shift of the Kibbutz from rural commune to pastoral suburb, problematising the ambiguous nature of the sharing economy, suspended between egalitarian ideology and ubiquitous exploitation of labour.

Spatial Principles of the Veteran Kibbutz

The spatial conception of the Veteran Kibbutz was born out of a desire to physically embody socialist and communitarian aspirations through spatial principles of organisation: the settlement materialises an idea of society. The Veteran Kibbutz typically manifested in a cyclical organisational structure, in which the most public facilities would sit in the centre (the Central District) adjoined by education facilities. Thereafter, housing would be formed in concentric circles, so even this most private space was reaching towards the communal.
A Geographical and Social Intersection

A Geographical and Social Intersection

The School is situated between Kibbutz Evron and the Israeli-Arab town of Mazra'a, in Northern Israel. Mazra'a has been granted much-needed rights of expansion and is set to grow three-fold. The chosen site sits at a key geographical intersection between the Kibbutz and Mazra’s new development, mostly characterised by residential use with few planned services, thus providing the opportunity to serve both communities. Inspired by the Central-District of the Kibbutz as the epicentre of public life, the school aims to not only to build knowledge in the realms of High-Tech but also to provide communal services to the local communities.

Cast Models - Terminal Rodoviario de Jau by Vilanova Artigas - An Exploration into the Archetype of the Cover

Cast Models - Project Forms - Exploration of the Archetype

Cast Models - Project Forms - Exploration of the Archetype

Cast Models - Terminal Rodoviario de Jau by Vilanova Artigas - An Exploration into the Archetype of the Cover

The project draws inspiration from the study of the Terminal Rodoviario de Jau by Vilanova Artigas, as an example of the archetype of the Cover. The form of the Cover defines the boundaries of space without relying on walls or enclosures. The project builds on the possibility that the architecture of the cover could subtly indicate perimeters and limits of a territory and its use, without resorting to a division of ownership, a notion of ‘mine from theirs' and thus promoting an open idea of communitarianism.

Cast Models - Project Forms - Exploration of the Archetype

The models explore the two distinct archetypes, used to formulate the project. The large industrial cover and the pavilions. The space of the school is constituted by a composition of pavilions immersed in a binding landscape. The diverse forms of the pavilions refer to the common architectural types of the local communities, with the aim of providing a plurality of spaces for the School uses that are as culturally inclusive as possible.

Medium:

Cast Models - Jesmonite

GF Plan - A Composition in the Landscape

Roof Plan - A Composition in the Landscape

The ground floor plan is treated as a landscape composition, where the disposition of the pavilion is essentially indifferent to the monumental presence of the large cover. The entire space is organised by a network of winding paths that connect the School to the surrounding area. The large roof houses public facilities, such as a dining hall, library, amphitheatre and coffee-shop. The pavilions host the school facilities such as lecture theatres, workshops, classrooms, a computer lab and more private meeting rooms.

The project pushes to the extreme the original landscape idea of the Kibbutz, which is described as neither a recreational park, nor as a village-scape where plot lines are emphasized but as a space of sociability. In the contemporary post-fordist condition the space of sociability acquires the paradoxical dimension of extreme individuality within the totally generic, which is reflected in the choice of making every corner unique but also essentially the same. The treatment of the landscape produces a bucolic atmosphere that is countered by the industrial dimension of the cover, producing an effect of estrangement that continuously reminds us of the productive nature of the landscape.

KEY
1. Data/Services - 2. Large Workshop- 3. Computer Suite- 4. Admin - 5. Small Workshop - 6. Large Lecture Theatre - 7. Small Lecture Theatre - 8. Classroom - 9. Classroom - 10. Classroom -11. Meeting Room- 12 Water Tower - 13. Classroom - 14. Meeting Room -15. The Cover- 15(A). Amphitheatre – 15(B). Dining Hall – 15(C). Coffee Shop- 15(D). Library

Project Sequence - The Transformative Nature of the Cover

The project compositional choices expose the potential of the cover to disrupt the leisurely and pacified agrarian landscape. The pavilions follow a precise compositional logic that privileges the small scale and scattered character of the suburban landscape, while the cover acts as an exception to the rule in scale and form. The introduction of the cover breaks the established logic, introducing an element that refers to the global dimension of the productive relationship at stake in the School. The cover transforms the space into something distinct from its neighbours, thereby allowing the project to produce a new orientation and meaning for the entire territory.

The Cover - An Ambiguity Between Agrarian and Technological Forms

In the form of the large cover, the project considers the paradoxical situation of the current Kibbutz. A friction between the world of globalised high-tech and capitalism and the Kibbutz's core values of communitarianism, with its economic principles once based in agricultural production. With its saw-tooth shape, pureness of white, steel bracket and metal columns, the large roof sits in a purposely-ambiguous place between agricultural shed and technological factory.

Perspective Section - The Life of the School

Perspective Section - The Life of the School

In a typical day, people of the school weave through a range of scales, atmospheres, all underpinned by the landscape. The permeability of the cover’s structure, and the project as a whole, allows views through to its context, framing a continuous conversation with its surroundings. Such permeability allows the all-day garden to be the generic background of any activity, thereby reinforcing the sense of ambiguity inherent in the project between pastoral landscape and hi-tech production.

A Journey Through The Project

A Journey Through The Project

The rolling image starts from the domestic scenes of the Kibbutz and drives through the different spaces of the school, it eventually terminates in the fields awaiting upcoming urbanisation.

The cover looms over the kibbutz gate signalling a transition from domestic to public space.
Beneath the cover, is the busiest space of the project, where the activities move fluidly between external and internal spaces, a spatial manifestation of the blurred nature of boundaries and limits between domestic, leisure and productive environments.
As one emerges from the cover into the space of the School, the multitude of pavilions organises the landscape in a kaleidoscopic array of forms and materials that are playing between the rural and the industrial. The "all-day garden", stitches the forms together, becoming itself the space of sociability as the ultimate space of production.
Social
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