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UBC Graduate Research

Dinner Party : explorations of co-creation in the professional practice of architecture Durham, Emma


This project explores a more collective approach to the architectural process in both the production of materials and allocation of funding. This investigation will be conducted through the selective commissioning of sub-contractors made possible through a pool of acquired funds. In turn, my role in this thesis as an architecture student becomes less focused on a specific outcome, but rather working within the necessary means to create a final project that explores values of labour and exchange that showcases every party. Capitalism has continuously shrunk the role of the architect, and some have surmised that the creative input of the architect will eventually be rendered obsolete. In school, students are taught to assume a social stance to their designs. However, once released into the professional world, it is quickly acknowledged that the architect must succumb to the agenda of the client and their budget, not to mention the contracts and licensure that hold architects accountable for innumerable liabilities and risks. The people we are trained to help are no longer within our reach, and imagination that we cultivate is stifled. I want to channel this creativity into the systems of capital flow and labour in order to reconnect architecture with the demographics it wishes to uplift. This experiment hopes to reinstate the value of the architect while simultaneously dethroning its ego. This process would re-evaluate the role of the architect, positioning it somewhere between that of a developer and that of a curator, and distance itself from the position of the creator. While this new role would shift the creative control of the architect, it is my belief that this process would create opportunity for creations that are more fitting for the end user and would serve as a model to support craftspeople.

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Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International