Architectural education at the Institute for Art and Architecture is based on five research platforms. They provide the foundation for a new type of architectural education, in which students and teachers alike can focus on a particular interest and yet connect to all of the other topics that are essential to understand the complexity of the discipline of architecture.
ADP Analogue Digital Production
CMT Construction Material Technology
ESC Ecology Sustainability Cultural Heritage
HTC History Theory Criticism
GLC Geography Landscapes Cities
Each platform constitutes a research and design laboratory exploring relevant contemporary issues within its respective field. Design projects are at the center of the education and are taught by a versatile faculty of practicing architects, historians, engineers on a one-on-one basis and through team-teaching.
In an increasingly “real” digital environment, the use of digital design and simulation tools cannot do justice to the potentials of an increasingly digital human being; therefore, we need more than mere "Analog and Digital Production", we need our entire sensorium, and we need all the means at our disposal. In order to go beyond the limits of "Analog and Digital Production", and to continually re-define them, we have to orient our teaching towards researching with "all our means", with algorithms and straws, with data sets floating free in time and space, with screwdrivers and matches, with analog, digital, and digitally fabricated models, with images, films, and language, sounds blowing with the wind.
In the course of the research and teaching done via the Platform, the mutual conditions and dependencies of humans, climate, and high-tech environment are made both visible and newly active. This interactivity is also reflected in the hidden power of spatial systems and used as a tool for developing projects with complex construction programs, and for celebrating this complexity. Furthermore, we investigate the question of how the design and the transformation of materials influence the form and gestalt of our constructed environment, and what new roles both old and new materials can assume.
The Platform ESC investigates the mediating and catalyzing function of architecture in the relationship between organisms and their environment. The increasingly critical conditions of these diverse environments and their different kinds of correlation require more specific, in-depth investigation that also takes into account the growing cultural and social aspects of a sustainability that needs to be newly defined. Similarly, cultural heritage is deemed part of these dynamically interdependent environments, and thus deemed an influential transformative practice in contrast to a duty of conservation.
Platform Teachers 2019|20: Alessandra Cianchetta, Christina Condak, Günther Dreger, Golmar-Mina Kempinger-Khatibi, Damjan Minovski, Peter Leeb, Luciano Parodi, Franz Sam, Hannes Stiefel, Rüdiger Suppin
Additionally to its teaching activities, the Platform HTC is also concerned with research, especially in the fields of the history, theory, and criticism of architecture, urban construction, and space. Therefore, the uniqueness of this Platform lies in its function as an interface: not only between research and teaching, but also between the theory and practice of architectural designing. This is clearly visible in the design studios, where, using a variety of experimental formats, students have the opportunity of “designing” research, and of “researching” design. Thus, students can utilize their visual and creative faculties for theoretical and historical work; they can write and design books, curate exhibitions, prepare and deliver presentations, or design abstract spatial concepts or theories. However, students also have the chance of acquiring the knowledge required for a scientific career, or for writing a doctoral thesis.
Platform Teachers 2019|20: Christina Condak, Günther Dreger, Antje Lehn, Luciano Parodi, Andreas Rumpfhuber, August Sarnitz, Lisa Schmidt-Colinet, Angelika Schnell, Rüdiger Suppin, Wolfgang Tschapeller
The Platform GLC conceives of cities and landscapes as social constructs, and as mental as well as physical, material entities. Both city and landscape are spatio-temporal structures, and their diversity is influenced by cultural, social and natural factors. Anything that exists does so in relation to this environment, and is therefore symbiotic and contextual per se. The platform explores and describes these complex dynamic systems, in the process developing architecture as an operational tool for lending physical reality to the concepts of landscapes and cities.
Platform Teachers 2018|19: Alessandra Cianchetta, Christina Condak, Günther Dreger, Christina Jauernik, Gabu Heindl, Daniela Herold, Damjan Minovski, Antje Lehn, Lisa Schmidt-Colinet, Rüdiger Suppin, Christian Teckert