Archinauts of the cosmoroute: Itinerat Critic Observatory
EXHIBITED at Venice Architecture Biennale 2016
PUBLISHED by Spanish Pavilion catalogue

Project Director: Víctor Cano Ciborro
Team: Alejandro Burgueño, José de Andrés, Ana Sabugo, José Javier Cullen, Rocío Romero. 
Case study: Spanish BOOM ruins
Exhibit and Awarded by VENICE ARCHITECTURE BIENNALE 2016.
‘Unfinished’ Spanish Pavilion

Project at Venice Architecture Biennale. Spanish Pavilion official website - unfinished.es

- Background: In February 1973 –and along two weeks- a double-decker bus was transformed into a traveling and audiovisual library thanks to the different architecture schools in UK. The project, carried out by the AA, was inspired in the concept of POLYARK regarding the idea of Cedric Price about a collaborative net for knowledge and awareness.
May 23, 1982. Julio Cortázar and Carol Dunlop drove their Volkswagen Combi for a month through the Paris-Marseille highway under the premise of not leaving that road. As a result, they discovered all the minor issues of the territory and collected them in the book ‘Autonauts of the Cosmoroute’.
In 1997 the "Housing bubble in Spain" arose and the wild speculation caused the disappearance of an aesthetic and ethical sense in the dynamics of construction.
In 2007 the bubble bursted causing a devastating housing crisis, the economic rescue of the savings banks, the increase of the evictions and the destruction of both natural and human ecosystems.
In 2015 an interview of Pascal Gielen to Rem Koolhaas was published in the exhibition catalogue of "Constant. New Babylon". The Dutch architect states that ‘the matter is not about bringing use to a project, but to tell stories.’

- Current situation - LIMBO SPACE: The "Unfinished" is synonymous with pure uncertainty, or as Cedric Price could say, a "Limbo Space". In these areas, according to the British architect, the most intense moment of the architecture takes place, since the essence of architecture is no longer laying in a stable construction, well defined and with specific programs, but rather through unstable situations that are inhabited by underling characters out of all standard, cliché or economic role.
In the "Unfinished", the stakeholders no longer ask themselves what is imposed or what is planned, but What are the aesthetics of the limbo? Who lives in the limbo? What are their lifestyles?

- Detection - Action: In 2016 the construction industry begins to revive and the "aesthetics of the post-bubble" do not respond to a change of paradigm. In this context, a project arises to make the agents involved in the unfinished state of the Spanish housing and infraestructure VIEW, EXPERIMENT and LEARN FROM THEIR BODIES the scenario caused by themselves. Thus, rather than promoting a specific action, this project is positioned in a previous state where there is no big interest in seeking a "happy end" to these "Unfinished" territories, but in knowing how to shape the needs of the people out of any design pattern.

- Proposal: An ITINERANT AND CRITICAL OBSERVATORY is proposed conformed by the Involved Agents: Developers, builders, lawyers, politicians and architects, who will travel in transport systems -with an oniric-satiric-critical design- to the ‘Unfinished’. The aim is to sensitize -from the very same skin- to rethink new urban plans, laws, construction and / or lifestyles.
This program of critical mobility will travel through 12 "Limbo Spaces" of the Spanish territory divided into three observatories:
1_ Critical maritime Observatory: To study the coasts, the watersheds, the shores and the other natural assets and protected lands that they have been silted by mass tourism.
2_ Critical road Observatory: To check out the periphery of the sui generis stories embodied by a population with forced aesthetics and culture to adopt ways of life imposed by promoters, regulations and formal abstractions.
3_ Critical flying Observatory: To be aware of how the fertile territories have become obsolete by the existence of infrastructure that did not respond to real users’ needs.

Spanish pavilion official website

El Pabellón de España, enmarcado en la Bienal de Arquitectura de Venecia ha buscado mediante el concurso “especulaciones creativas sobre la subversión de la condición pasada en una acción contemporánea positiva” que tenían como foco de interés los territorios inacabados –UNFINISHED‐ que el territorio nacional ha acumulado debido al estallido de la burbuja inmobiliaria.

De este modo, el grupo de arquitectos formado Víctor Manuel Cano Ciborro, Alejandro Burgueño Díaz, José Manuel de Andrés Moncayo, Ana Sabugo Sierra, José Javier Cullen Afonso y Rocío Romero Rivas, presenta una propuesta titulada “Arquinautas de la Cosmopista: Observatorio Crítico Itinerante” que ha resultado premiada para ser expuesta en la Bienal.

© 2023 Víctor Cano Ciborro
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