Boisbuchet as a Canvas

By Aaron Britt / Published by Dwell
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The Spanish architect, artist, and designer Luis Urculo once said, "I no longer know what an architect is and what an architect should do...." This past summer Urculo led one of the design seminars put on at the pastoral French estate Boisbuchet, where he and a group of students investigated some of the limits of the discipline. Their work, captured in the video below, took them out of the studio and into the landscape, allowing them to imagine a strange and magical intersection between art, architecture, sculpture, and performance. Their canvases were no longer paper or galleries or sites, as such, instead bodies of water, existing structures, and sound were the points of departure for the work. We hope Urculo never does full figure out what an architect is meant to do. We also hope he never stops searching for the answer.

Boisbuchet as a canvas / Luis Urculo from Luis Urculo on Vimeo.

I also couldn't resist posting this video, also by Urculo, called Covers/Versiones. It made the rounds a couple months back, but as a vision of domesticized architecture it's quite powerful. In it we see eight iconic modern structures built out of everyday objects—books, napkins, cutlery. Simultaneously mythologizing (and taking a swipe at architectural myth) Urculo gives us a homespun version of several architectural classics. Like a teenager at home in her bedroom with a guitar "covering" a tune by her favorite band, these small sculptures say as much about Urculo as the original structures say about their makers.


Covers/Luis Urculo from Luis Urculo on Vimeo.

Aaron Britt


Aaron writes the men's style column "The Pocket Square" for the San Francisco Chronicle and has written for the New York Times, the Times Magazine, Newsweek, National Geographic and others.

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