Project Stories
#14: Rotor + Ouest (BE)

PROJECT STORIES is an architecture talk series which takes an intimate, behind-the-scenes look at the stories of built projects to offer an insight into the nature of architectural practice today.

For the 14th edition of Project Stories we have a special arrangement where the project will be presented as a collaborative process between three parties, all represented in the lecture – project architects Ouest, project consultants on material ecology Rotor and clients Zinneke Association.

Zinneke, the social and artistic organization known for its biennial parade in Brussels, has been settling in the Masui neighbourhood, north of the city centre, since 2013. After a rather nomadic existence, they found this permanent home, which has now been renovated and restructured in close collaboration with Rotor and Ouest architecture. The team developed an ambitious work method of co-creation to enable a far-reaching reuse of materials and to stimulate collaboration that prioritizes care and solidarity for people and the environment.
Brussels-based ROTOR was founded in 2006 as a non-profit cooperative design practice that investigates the organisation of the material environment. They develop critical positions through research and design. Besides projects in architecture and interior design, they also produce exhibitions, books, economic models and policy proposals. This includes their contribution (exhibition and publication Usures) to the Belgian Pavilion for the 2010 Venice Biennale of Architecture, along with curating the exhibition and publication Behind the Green Door for the Oslo Architecture Triennale 2012-2013.

In 2016, the firm launched Rotor Deconstruction, a cooperative that organizes the reuse of construction materials through the dismantling, processing, and trading of salvaged building components, as a strategy on the path towards a more resource-efficient materials economy.

OUEST Architecture is an architectural practice based in Brussels, fascinated by the city and what’s already there. They work with the context and the existing in an enthusiastic, respectful and uninhibited way, for projects that seek to strengthen the urban dynamic and modestly try to answer the big question: how to live together? Ouest is led by architect Stéphane Damsin and engineer-architect Jan Haerens.

Zinneke Association organizes the Zinneke Parade, a biennial parade held in the City of Brussels, Belgium, since 2000, which brings together at each edition about 1500 participants. The parade was established with the aim of connecting the many different cultures, communities and districts within Brussels. The director of the Zinneke Association, Myriam Stoffen, has talked about the desire to ‘build bridges’ between these parts of the city. The organisers of the parade aim to work with a large variety of institutions, schools, cultural centres, organisations and societies. Residents work together with professional artists to create the ideas and prepare the projects which eventually make up the parade. A characteristic of the parade which distinguishes it from many other parades or carnivals is that it is described as being “100% human” – music is performed live, without amplification, and there are no motorised vehicles.

Project Stories #14 is co-hosted by the Bergen School of Architecture (BAS) and Bergen Arkitektforening (BAF). The series is curated by Cristian Stefanescu (Assistant Professor, BAS).

Image Credits
Delphine Mathy | Zinneke

Doors open: 19:00
Talk: 19:15