AboutThrough examining the work, Association for Imaginary Architecture (AfIA), this presentation will address some economies and aesthetics of a feminist practice situated between the disciplines of art and architectural design. AfIA was designed to understand how experiences of built environments are imagined and internalized. By analysing verbal and photographic documentation of user experience, this presentation seeks to identify how a 'poor' materiality (i.e. spoken words, hand gestures, chairs) might be of value to users. The work also investigates what real and symbolic uses an imaginary institution might offer to art or architectural design.
Issues relevant to both art and architecture such as spectatorship, authorship, transcription, and interface will be considered in relation to AfIA's interplay of orality and touch. Special focus will be given to the concept of dorsality. By dorsality, I am referring to the physical space of the back, as well as the space and performance of memory.
AfIA is one strand (a 'control' strand, in that it is designed for human use) of a PhD dissertation (titled towards a feline architecture) that addresses interspecies spaces in urban contexts. The central aim of towards a feline architecture is the design of holding environments for and by agents in interspecies ecologies. It performs this through critically disrupting and exceeding categorical boundaries of species and spaces.
Joanne Bristol trained as an artist and has an MFA from NSCAD (Halifax, Canada). Her work investigates relationships between nature and culture, and between the body and language. She is pursuing a PhD by Design at the Bartlett, using performance and writing to understand interspecies spatial relationships in urban contexts.