BSoAD | Unit 2 | 2019 – 20
Bea Martin with Rob Annable & Ian Shepherd
ARC6013 Design Resolution 3


This studio asked students to become a social actionist – an [insitu] ationist. To contribute to the field of architecture by intersecting design, social criticism and activism as a key ‘creative driver’ in the advancement of innovative spatial design processes. To explore a new generation of ideas and tools for innovating our physical and social infrastructure. The insituationist is an architectural manifesto that instigates rebellious design collaboration at an interdisciplinary level. With a role as important in the verbalisation of architecture as that of its design, the ‘insituactionist’ either produces a new space or gives an existing one new meanings and uses contrary to established behaviour. In so, the architect’s action is tied together through a common sensory ‘fabric’ that arises from a shared distribution of the spectacle – defining the way of being together. Digbeth’s Terrain Vagues This studio was interested in the form of absence in the contemporary city. The abandoned areas, on obsolete and unproductive spaces and buildings, often undefined and without specific limits, places to which Solà-Morales applies the French term terrain vague. The studio proposed new urban situations that could be assimilated as a process of unfolding, of differentiation, and of a quest for information that is often not quantifiable and escapes the logic of analysis systems of traditional urbanism. Specifically the study aimed to investigate how architecture can develop design methods that negotiate with these vacant sites in Digbeth, in order to maximise opportunities for occupation and social involvement, while retaining the sense and potency of Terrain Vague qualities.