Usually we relate architecture with its inorganic and inert manifestations, with all that is hard and does not change. Based on this we have learnt to speak and write. It crams the archives of culture. However, we propose an alternative look to its complementary: an organic and soft side. One that breaks down and leaves no trace when it disappears. One that is easy to handle and requires actions from its inhabitants to activate it. One that cannot be preserved without affections. To that architecture and to the world it builds we call it Pelt.
Maintenance policies and a misunderstood culture of efficiency have been eroding the pelt’s trail of the places we inhabit. This trend towards eradication and banishment has been especially intense in offices and workspaces. In these spaces, from the pelt, just some strange inhabitants remain, always present, and at the same time always foreign. They are ghosts of a faraway world that reveal the gap between the space where we live in and the universe they refer to, which we cannot and will not resign. We propose claiming their presence and asserting their powers.
Changing the way we imagine, design and build workspaces steams on looking over our imaginaries. The ambition of the project is not about creating an imaginary from scratch, as amplifying and dive on the trail of current offices’ pelt thereby constructing new mythologies. We propose, as a first step, an inversion in the hierarchies of the physical transformation of spaces. Against the common action of keeping what is stable and removing the pelt, we propose here the opposite: isolate, identify and display what changes and mutates to make clear his powers. To celebrate what is connected with the cycles of life both inside and outside buildings and evidence the passage of time. The aim is to make visible the ways in which the pelt is materialized rethinking how the management and transformation of the physical part of the world, as a collective action, can expand our practice, also, to an architectural taxidermist.
The research comes from the collection of photographs of numerous office spaces of Shenzhen city and its surroundings. Through these images, the manifestations of the pelt have been traced. The vegetation and lighting have been emphasized for their ability to negotiate the relationships between the body and the constructed. The proposal is decoupled from the usual forms of architectural representation and seeks to create a new constellation of imaginaries. Building its own mythology to revisit the spaces they come from. Both the documentary dimension of research and the physical installation trace and alternative atlas with which to project again with embodied pelts.