How will migration influence architecture and the city?
Photo: Fuji, Laura Cristea's cat
I have a 1.8x1.8m dining table, most of the time tidy and empty. One thin, copper lamp stands on this table between its center and one of the corners. When sitting on the table observing the room, my cat always sits next to the lamp. There is so much space on the table, but she sits next to this one other element. Her instinct is to have a reference point, to sit next to. If we would walk in a vast space with one pillar, we would also most probably position ourselves close to it. Between all humans, and even with animals, we share very basic space-perception instincts.
Tokyo, still the most populated city in the world, is so lively, dense and uneven that it feels part of nature again – a natural cycle of death and rebirth, even though everything is so artificial. By contrast, many recent European city developments I find too rigid – their planning and architecture is predictable, shaped by interdictions, alignments and uniformity, opposing the world of plurality developing before our eyes.
The possibility to search for a better habitat is our ultimate freedom. Through migration ideologies mix and disappear, common beliefs get diluted. I see this freedom as a chance for architects to quit styles and contextual clichés. The basic experience of space could be the common ground for creating new cultures and new ways of living together in the years to come. Not as forms of adaptation, but as evolution.
Laura Cristea is an architect working both in Romania and Switzerland. She studied at UAUIM in Bucharest and graduated in 2016 from The Oslo School of Architecture. The first built work is Inverted House in Hokkaido, Japan, developed together with a team from the same school led by Neven Mikac Fuchs. She worked as a teaching assistant for the studio of Raphael Zuber in Oslo, at EPF Lausanne and at ETH Zurich. She is also a founding partner of Pelinu Books