Architecture students from UIC Barcelona have devised and constructed four new systems for displaying and exhibiting architecture projects. These tools form the basis for creating itinerant exhibitions and are unique due to their easy transportability.
The four systems were developed as part of the Vertical Workshop. Under the title “Itinerant Architects: Systems for Architectural Exhibitions”, students from years 2 through 5 created systems which serve to offer an explanation of the projects, reinforce the architectural discourse and generate a controlled exhibition ecosystem.
The workshop also provided the opportunity to reflect on several matters of substance in Architecture, including the industrialisation of construction processes, sustainability, transportability and scenography as an element in project discourse.
The projects included an origami-inspired triangular-shaped modular click locking system; a foldable and removable wood bracket system based around the diamond; a proposal to use paper and air to create architectural experiences and scenography; and a modular system of totems that makes it possible to assemble everything from small items such as chairs to large display panels.
In all cases, these systems may be used to create exhibitions in both small spaces, such as offices, and large spaces, such as pavilions or warehouses. These elements are transportable and temporary, characteristics generally reserved for ephemeral architecture.
Wall X, winner of the Vertical Workshop competition
The jury at the UIC Barcelona School of Architecture’s Vertical Workshop awarded first place to the project “Wall X” due to its flexibility, balance, simplicity and capacity to generate spaces. “Wall X” makes it possible to assemble large linear exhibition surfaces within a few minutes, thanks to its foldable wood and canvas structure.
The jury featured architects and faculty members Juan Trias de Bes and David Masip, as directors; Iñaki Baquero, architect and lecturer at UIC Barcelona; and Anna Bach, architect in the Barcelona-based studio Bach Arquitectes, as special guests.
“This was the project that most clearly responded to the Vertical Workshop’s requirements,” explained Anna Bach. “It is flexible, the economy of its form is exquisite and all the pieces are identical. It allows for fast assembly and disassembly and, ultimately, provides solutions.”
Exploration of issues of substance in Architecture
In addition to its directors, Juan Trias de Bes and David Masip, Vertical Workshop participants also included lecturers Anton Aluja and Cinta Lluís as coordinators, as well as a string of guest architects and lecturers charged with leading the workshops. These included Albert Jové and Sandro Mistralli from JOMI arquitectura, Marta Benedicto from Cierto Estudio, Nino Mgeladze from Gina Barcelona Architects, Toni Poch from Barozzi Veiga, Lucciana Viteri from Archikubik, Alex Clarà from BAAS Arquitectura and Yago Vaillo from Vaillo + Irgaray.
“The Workshop proposes industrialised construction and production systems as the main area of knowledge,” explained Juan Trias de Bes, architect and director of the Vertical Workshop. “In situ construction in the field of Architecture is gradually fading, while industrialised systems are gaining ground. The time saved in construction and the reduction in errors are some of the benefits of industrialisation,” he added.
“The Vertical Workshop is a key activity for Architecture students. It a vigorous start to the academic year and a great opportunity to discuss topics of interest in today’s construction industry,” explains David Masip, architect and co-director of the Vertical Workshop. “It is in everyday life where architects play a key and transformative role.”
The Vertical Workshop began on 2 September on UIC Barcelona’s Barcelona Campus with an opening session featuring Víctor Echarri, director of the School of Architecture, Juan Trias de Bes, David Masip and Iñaki Baquero, architects and faculty members. The projects were developed over the course of one week at the University. The full-scale projects were then assembled on 8 September at the Rei Marti Water Deposit in Barcelona, where they were judged by a panel and where the closing event took place.