Studio Work: Buenos Aires, Fall 2010

  • Work by Debbie Balters, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Debbie Balters, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
  • Work by Debbie Balters, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Debbie Balters, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
  • Work by Max Bemberg, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Max Bemberg, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
  • Work by Belle Stone, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Belle Stone, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
  • Work by Belle Stone, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Belle Stone, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
  • Work by Elizabeth Keane, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.
    Work by Elizabeth Keane, Fall 2010, Buenos Aires.

Buenos Aires International Studio, Fall 2010

Gerardo Caballero, Lecturer Abroad
Gustavo Cardon, Lecturer Abroad
Fabián Llonch, Lecturer Abroad

This studio explores the diversity and contradiction of Buenos Aires and includes it as material for design. Looking at the plan of the city, we imagine a homogeneous territory, one that suggests a repetitive, manmade fabric rarely altered by exceptional artifacts. But a photograph of any piece of this urban landscape reveals a much more complex urban condition that makes room for a variety of buildings, uses, and meanings, often juxtaposed in the most uninhibited ways. In this setting, design work strives to overcome dichotomies between old and new, closed and open, vastness and enclosure, repetition and exception, and other dualities.

The program is the design of a place for local ceremony in San Telmo. This old neighborhood is the focus of cultural activities related to tango—a cornerstone of the city’s identity—and is one of the touristic spots of the city, housing numerous art galleries. In addition to offering a place for people to dance tango, the new building must serve as a receptive public facility that offers administrative services and commercial activities related to cultural programming. The building is intended to be as attractive to those directly engaged with its main activities as it is to curious individuals who get in touch with tango in a casual way.

Students are asked to design the same program in two different lots that are located close to one another but possess contrasting formal conditions, providing an opportunity to experience and exemplify a wider range of design attitudes when confronting the fabric of Buenos Aires. As they develop their designs, students must recognize both the opportunities and restrictions of the local culture in terms of building techniques and materials.