Jean-Nicolas-Louis Durand, National Library France/ public domain

Lex Communis:

The Commonality of the Discipline and the Discipline of the Common Place


Lecture Tom Avermaete | 07.11.2016 | 19h | IKA R211a

In his inaugural lecture at the College de France the French philosopher Michel Foucault, positioned the organization of a discipline as opposed to the notion of authorship. Foucault claims that a discipline goes beyond the single authorship and is based on a commons; “a discipline is defined by a domain of objects, a set of methods, a corpus of propositions considered to be true, a play of rules and definitions, of techniques and instruments: all of this constitutes a sort of anonymous system at the disposal of anyone who wants to or is able to use it, without their meaning being linked to the one who happened to be their inventor.”

In this lecture we will probe into this anonymous, common system in the discipline of architecture. Are architecture and urbanism still based on a commons? What constituted the commons of the discipline historically? And does a commons still exist today? and how would we imagine and describe such a commons?

In a second part of the lecture we will look into the various attempts to introduce the elements and rationales of the ‘common place’ into the disciplines of architecture and urbanism.

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Lex Communis:

The Commonality of the Discipline and the Discipline of the Common Place

Tom Avermaete | Lecture Series 2016|17

We will see how common knowledge concerning the built environment was intentionally incorporated to widen the notion of the discipline from a knowledge field that was exclusively accessible for highly trained experts to a matter that could be discussed and accessed by a wider group of citizens.

 

Constructing the Commons: Another Approach to Architecture and the City
 | Winterterm 2016|17
Tom Avermaete | Endowed Professorship for Research in Visionary Cities

The endowed professorship (Endowed chair “City Culture and Open Space“) financed by the City of Vienna, was installed in 2015 within the study programs of the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. It has the objective to artistically, radically and poetically bring forward the debate on the city and architecture. The object of study is the city. The teaching and research beholden with the endowed professorship focuses on the formulation of radical and visionary concepts regarding urban space. A further goal is to intensify the exchange of ideas and knowledge transfer between the city of Vienna and the Institute for Art and Architecture.

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Constructing the Commons:

Another Approach to Architecture and the City

Tom Avermaete | Endowed Professorship for Research in Visionary Cities | Lecture Series Winterterm 2016|17

This series is composed of five complementary lectures that together aim to outline an architectural understanding of the character, role and operations of the commons:

1. The Commons and its Tragedy: Introducing a Notion
2. Lex Communis: The Commonality of the Discipline and the Discipline of the Common Place
3. Praxis Communis: The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation
4. Res Communis: Common-Pool Resources in Architecture and Urban Design
5. The Architecture of the Commons: A New Path of Contemporary Logos and Praxis