Never Demolish | Ilka and Andreas Ruby | Ruby Press - Fundació Mies van der Rohe

Never Demolish | Ilka and Andreas Ruby | Ruby Press

In the 60s and 70s, large-scale housing blocks were built around the world as a solution to meet the need for housing. Five decades later, they are largely considered ideologically outdated, urbanistically failed, and licensed to be demolished. The intervention “Never Demolish” by curators Ilka and Andreas Ruby, which is added to the Pavilion’s intervention program, argues that these buildings should have a better second life than the first, through their transformation: expanding and improving the quality of life of the inhabitants. In this context, the Pavilion is transformed into a domestic space reminiscent of the 530 homes transformed by Lacaton & Vassal, Frédéric Druot and Christophe Hutin in the Grand Parc Bordeaux, winner of the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award. This transformation of the Pavilion deepens the debate on housing and how the Bordeaux project becomes a model for the social and physical rehabilitation of the housing blocks of the modern movement and its surroundings. An intervention aimed at and equally affecting the inhabitants, architects, urban planners, developers, heritage conservators and politicians.

Ilka and Andreas Ruby are the founders of Ruby Press, a publishing house specializing in architecture and urbanism to take advantage of the new critical potential in architectural publishing. Trained as an architect and historian of architecture respectively, they work as critics, curators, moderators, editors and professors dedicated to communicate architecture beyond the “usual suspects” of the discipline to a wide audience. Since 2016 Andreas Ruby is the director of the Swiss Museum of Architecture S AM in Basel.

On 26 November in the afternoon, at the COAC, there will be a Conversation about housing and transformation projects, between the four architects and the two curators;  the doyenne of the COAC, Assumpció Puig, Josep Ferrando, member of Culture and responsible for the exhibition “Montbau, 1958-1964. Entre Arquitectura i Harmonia”, curated by the Culture Department of the COAC, Sandra Bestraten, president of the Demarcation of Barcelona and author of the research resulting in the publication and exhibition “50 anys d’història de Bellvitge ”, Xavier Matilla, chief architect of the Ajuntament de Barcelona and Anna Ramos, director of the Fundació Mies van der Rohe.

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