Studio 02: After City 2 – Tolerance and Compromise

Studio brief

Studio 2 will continue to explore the potential of contemporary rural landscape. Working with the notions of the assemblage, incrementalism and infrastructure, we will look for small adjustments and architectural strategies that accept absence and slackness as a critical alternative to regeneration through completeness. 


Portugal is a mosaic of landscapes, partly the result of climatic conditions but also as a result of human activities, particularly agriculture and industry. We will speculate on the impacts of various sectors on the landscape, the consequences of which can be found not only in the physical environment but also in the daily lives of people. Regeneration, whether in rural or urban locations, is a provocative debate. In rural locations, timeframes, economics, land pressures, social and spatial organisation are different, but it's these factors that offer a frame of reference to consider new forms of settlement, one that finds a balance between an existing context and twenty-first century infrastructure. 

Field trip 

In November the studio will travel to Portugal. We will visit Oporto, Lisbon, Evora and finally, Moura where we will undertake field work and where your projects will be sited for the remainder of the year. 


Students are invited to consider assemblage as a form of map making and as a conceptual framework for proposals. The process of mapping, which includes reviewing through collaborative workshops, is on an equal footing to the artefacts made. In a sense, you will construct (pre-field trip) and reconstruct (post-field trip) the site in the studio, and as a group you will derive new insight into the location. This process will lead to your individual design proposals which will explore new spaces in relation to a wider and shared landscape.  

You will develop your own techniques in making, capturing the qualities of a particular location. Through modelling, sketching, montage and writing you will begin to be propositional.  We encourage you to be more deliberate and conscious in this creative act, drawing out architectural interventions that offer something special to the locations you have been recording. With ideas and ways of working gathered from investigations in the landscape of Alentejo, you are encouraged to develop strategies of conglomeration and projects that allow for spaces to deliberately conflict and converge; propositions that have the capacity to absorb additions, creating a social architecture with the potential for activities to take place within and around a building. We promote an idea of intensity of activity and mixture of use heightening an ‘urban’ experience rather than singular, specific programme. These uses are likely to change over time and therefore tolerance should be designed into the architecture.

Studio 2 will continue its collaboration with Berlin-based research organisation, The Leibniz Institute for Research on Space and Society, and the Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin) and work undertaken in the studio will contribute to the EU Horizon 2020 research programme. We will also continue to build on our relationship with Unit H at UEL, with the two studios working closely and collaboratively.


Image: Kevin Adorni – Studio 2 Exhibition 2018

Framed concrete block and sketch


Tutors Colin O’Sullivan
Charlotte Harris
Guests Jamie-Scott Baxter
Sophie Roycroft
Jane Clossick
Paul Shepheard
Felix Xylander-Swannell
Keita Tajima
Adam Cheltsov
Rob Rainbow
Where Goulston Street
Room GS2-31
When Tuesday and Friday

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