Conference Call

CC1 Teleinternetcafé

CC2 Collective Disaster

CC3 Gang of Six

CC4 orizzontale

CC5 Project Warehouse

CC6 Umschichten

CC7 Construct Lab

CC8 Process Institute

CC9 Bruit de Frigo

CC10 Collectif ETC

CC11 Rotor

CC12 Bellastock

CC13 5468796

CC14 Bergen Arkitekthøgskole

CC15 Punt6 + Hystereo


CC17 The Funambulist

CC18 Todo por la Praxis

Conference Call

We initiated a series of Conference Calls (CC), to investigate the recent proliferation of architecture collectives worldwide and to question our politics and our precarious working environment. Whether as a response to the economic crisis or a more radical desire for alternatives, many in creative fields have eschewed 9-to-5 office work in favor of more collaborative working environments.
The Conference Calls are informal interviews, based on a set of questions that hope to reveal the impetus behind this turn.
All of the interviewed groups are working on public space initiatives, and tend to have members scattered across the globe. They are often without a fixed headquarters and, at least in theory, horizontally organized. Our Conference Calls replicate the modes of communication most often used by contemporary collectives, by broadcasting a typical Google Hangout meeting live to YouTube.
The 80’s corporate tone of the series’ title points to an inherent irony, underpinned by a dangerous potential. The parallels between this world of ad-hoc design and participatory actions, and the traditional office environment are ostensibly few, yet the precarious nature of work in all sectors has led to a confusing intermixture of work and non-work, blurring the lines between so-called ‘collaborative’ projects and exploitative pseudo-jobs. By questioning the nature of collective practices, the Conference Calls seek to expose what it is that drives – or, indeed, repels – young artists, architects, and designers today.
Text by Alison Hugill