Graz Architecture Lectures 2021
Correction or revision includes the before and after.
It is an evolutionary act. A conscious act.
How often do I think to myself:
Actually, I should do it differently.
Not start from scratch, but change something.
Sometimes it's too late,
But often too early,
Because the view on things hasn't changed completely yet.
Where does this sudden desire come from—
Not to correct a mistake made unconsciously,
but to overturn a previously conscious decision. We want to talk to our participants not about their work,
but about the revisions in their work.
When and why was something corrected.
Not necessarily to improve it,
but because their own mindset towards things changed.
Or simply because they had to.
Having changed our mind is rarely admitted in public. The image of "consistency" and "stance", still held in high esteem in architectural discourse and strongly influenced by masculinity, is too overpowering, and the fear of damaging oneself with this image is too great. Architecture is about attitude. People argue for and against it or complain about the lack thereof. It is difficult to debate in public when someone changes their stance on something – and often the person concerned is deemed to suffer from a lack of stance. Up to now, "I am a whore"—Philip Johnson is regarded as a prime example for having such a lack of backbone. Strongly criticised is the apparent weakness that he changed his architectural stance every ten years – in contrast to his role model Mies van der Rohe. However, is stubborn adherence to one’s convictions a virtue in itself? Don’t we rather have a culture of correction now, which not only students of architecture endure as a pedagogical measure, but which is part of everyday business in architectural practice? After all, there is no design process that occurs without corrections to previous ideas, plans and sometimes the authors’ very convictions. Corrections are the most important drivers for change and ideally progress – especially in the field of architecture. However, corrections are rarely spoken about publicly. The image of "consistency" and "stance", still held in high esteem in architectural discourse and strongly influenced by masculinity, is too overpowering, and the fear of damaging oneself with this image is too great. The Graz Architecture Lectures 2021 are dedicated to the topic of "corrections". They are decidedly not about the attempt to correct or criticise others, but exclusively about one's own mindset, which has been adjusted. We invite experts working in the field of architecture who are prepared to present such a review and amendment of their work or judgement using a concrete example (a site, a building, a thesis,...).
(source TU Graz statement)