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e-xquis culturaltyphoonworkshop

Carla Leitao/Aumstudio Unit | TAs: Ai Kubota & Masatoshi Ono

In the E-XQUIS UNIT, we play a game with Tokyo, or invent a game for it to play itself. We will invent futures for the city where new relationships will exist between its places, reformulating contexts for culture to actively exercise and be reinvented. Drawing from the potential of virtual worlds to establish fruitfull questions to the physical one, we will use their coexistence as a proactive tool in understanding place, memory and urban life as dynamic fields. 

Welcome to the E-XQUIS unit


Cities are vast cultural memory systems, but the inhabitants are not usually conscious of the infinite overlapping stories they are living out.

In the E-XQUIS UNIT, we will be playing a game with the city of Tokyo, building a game that can play itself.

In this game, we will invent futures for the city, reformulating the possible contexts for culture to actively exercise and recreate itself.

Drawing from the potential of virtual worlds to establish fruitful questions to the physical one, we will use the redundancy of the coexistence of these virtual worlds - made visible by locative media technologies, among other devices - as a proactive tool in understanding place, memory and urban life as dynamic fields.

The participants will propose imagined situations for the neighborhood of Shimokitazawa in the form of 'future diary' entries. Documents will be produced to register the reality of those futures, so that they become the base for further scenario development.

Teams will swap their contents and develop each others' scenarios, each time providing a new layer of media, that evidences the testing of the new fields produced.

Participants are encouraged to swarm the process of writing these scenarios. We will test how various projected futures are able to reveal solutions which are a significant step towards promoting modes of community, urban and global decision making, stimulating creativity and individual memory and simultaneously engaging the discussion of a collective evolution. Moreover, we will ask how these processes encourage the participation of a diverse population and what the output modes are through which that locality can find a reciprocity.

The participants are to gather in teams of 3 persons. Each team will have an individual blog that they will use as a place for discussion, and as well to submit their different phases of work.

The Unit will be in parallel with the "Control Power Flow" Studio by Ed Keller and Doug Diaz, at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, New York.

The "Control Power Flow" Studio will be studying different ways in which space is used to influence the practice of events that can overturn political situations in a given time and space. Parallel to our week of work, they will be replaying in the city of New York, the maps their researches provided, translating motivation, agents, and configurations of space into the New York City of the present.

Participants of the E-XQUIS unit are encouraged to use this material in a critical manner as a way of understanding field concepts, active maps and space-time morphology representation strategies.

The processes presented can be understood as a creative use of the potential of urban life, habits, movements and space. Participants will contribute to a larger discussion by proposing ways of creating futures that have those territory lines bound to operative discussion and invention.


Each team will set up a field of work, selecting the places and situations that are to be engaged. During the project, teams will swap documents and develop the received project by building a framework that allows their fields to become a growing structure. In a last phase, teams will produce documents that test and evidence the evolution of the scenarios.

We will be working optionally with the YELLOWARROW.net project. The fields can in this way be marked within a system that is integrated in a more global network of contribution and visibility. The YELLOW ARROW component - and the use of locative media in general - can motivate a reflection on the different modes of input and output to locality and individuality that is so relevant to the engagement of more and more extensive networks of prolific diversity.

DAY 1 / 26:

– group visit to site
- introduction

DAY 2 / 27:

(around 12.00h)
- review:
DIARY ENTRY 1: setup of field 1
(Media Suggested: Text and Photos, with Yellow Arrows)

- swapping

DAY 3 / 28:

(around 12.00h)
- review:
DIARY ENTRY 2: development of field 1
(Media Suggested: maps, drawings, models)

– swapping

DAY 4 / 29:

(around 17.00h/5pm)
– Review:
– DIARY ENTRY 3: development of field 2
– testing in real place (film with audio)

- Presentation

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