At the beginning of the twenty-first century, an unfortunate coincidence of multiple factors—the economical recess, an overwhelming number of graduates, and the highest ratio of architects pro capite—manifested itself as a total lack of space in which young architects could thrive and prosper. We found ourselves confronted with the unsettling paradox of the Global Age: since every land has already been occupied, no further occupation is longer possible.
As a response to such hostile condition, a large part of these young architecture graduates—born mostly around the eighties—either worked in jobless offices, or simply turned to other professions. Yet, some of them took another road. Not finding a ‘room of their own’, they created their space elsewhere. They “hijacked” the obstructed channel leading from school to profession and materialized a further plane onto which they could be operative, in-between the “ideality” of theory and the “materialism” of practice. We established ourselves in a “fuzzy” space, of an architecture fermented out of the concrete object of its fabrica and the immaterial subject of its raciotinatio.
There is no doubt that the “age” of digital production and its “revolutionary” tools played an unavoidable role in supporting their work. If in the past some architects found some interest in the concept of “autonomy”, now architects themselves became autonomous. Authors-and-producers, we exploited the new means of production to “parasite” the system, bridging differences, toying with concepts and rearranging ideas.
Rather than focusing on the idea of architecture as a practice—social housing, practical building, “architecture for people” (poor people), sustainability, sustainability, sustainability!—the kids of the eighties started once again to think about architecture as a form of knowledge.
First and foremost, architecture as a practice of theory, or as a theory of practice. Quasi-theory, quasi-project.