Intermediate Unit 12 at the Architectural Association

Unit Trip to Mexico City

Architectural Association – Intermediate Unit 12

Covering ancient Aztec sites and cutting edge art and design practices, the students were asked to compile a travelogue of their experiences in the city. Acting like forensic detectives they had to explore the urban fabric looking for themes, communities and events to stimulate their designs. We were hunting down the alien and the peripheral, the marginalised and the strange to discover their potential as stimulation for a new urbanism. With the city as our laboratory we created personalised maps of this chaotic terrain.

“Here, in the most urbanised continent on the planet, extreme cities have bred extreme conditions – from vast housing estates to sprawling slums. […] What we’re seeing at the moment is a return to architecture as a social pursuit.”
–  Justin McGuirk, Radical Cities

In association with local architectural universities and practitioners we were introduced to contemporary design culture and, as a group, tested out a small scale event in the historic SEMINARIO 12 building in the centre of Mexico City. With Alejandro Jodorowsky as our visionary guide, Frida Kahlo as our local matriarch and Francis Alys as our tourist operator students had to develop an attitude and language for their architectures that is unique, colourful and provocative.

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Intermediate Unit 12 at the Architectural Association

SEMINARIO 12 – Mexico City

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