Katharina Schendl (Ed.)
|Anne Lacaton, Jean-Philippe VassalFreedom of Use|
“Nothing in the architecture of Lacaton and Vassal is what it looks like at first glance.”
— Iñaki Ábalos, introducing Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, March 24, 2015
Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal are known for an architecture that privileges inhabitants’ freedom and pleasure through generous, open designs. The Paris-based architects opened their 2015 lecture at Harvard University with a manifesto: study and create an inventory of the existing situation; densify without compressing individual space; promote user mobility, access, choice; and most importantly, never demolish. Freedom of Use reflects on these core values to present a fluid narrative of Lacaton and Vassal’s oeuvre, articulated through processes of accumulation, addition, and extension. The architects describe built and unbuilt work, from a house in Niger made of little more than branches; to the expansive Nantes School of Architecture; to a public square in Bordeaux where, after months of study, their design solution was: do nothing.
Lacaton and Vassal’s principle of doubling space is echoed in the book’s treatment of photography: black-and-white exterior shots that run alongside the text form a dialogue with corresponding full-color photographs of each interior, gathered at the end of the book.
The Incidents is a series of publications based on events that occured at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design between 1936 and tomorrow.
Copublished with the Harvard University Graduate School of Design
Book series designed by Åbäke