Firat Erdim

Whether with chisel, cast shadow, sprayed ink, or the pull of gravity, my research and practice investigate the intersection of projection, place, and materiality to question axioms of architectural imagination and construction. Projects such as Posts and Hisar Constructions are discrete constructions and site-specific installations that simultaneously contain states of assembly and disassembly, object and drawing, quarry and site. Projects such as Yeryüzü+Gökyüzü and Peregrine Projections explore techniques of land surveying and marine navigation as archetypal forms of architectural projection, and utilize these to unfold the relationship between monuments and the civic ground of the city.

Other more collaborative projects have explored the architectural agency of drawing and making as situated in specific places and communities. Flash Atölye, an episodic project space for art and architecture in a “pasaj” in İzmir, Turkey, became a place of cultural exchange based on the common language of craft, through a quick succession of projects by invited participants from around the world. In 2015, during my Rome Prize Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, I worked with the artist, Olivia Valentine, and landscape architects, Commonstudio, to lay the foundations for a garden of ecological succession at the Museo dell’Altro e dell’Altrove di Metropoliz (MAAM), an art space and immigrant community occupying a former salami factory on the edges of the city.

I believe the disarticulation of architecture into fragments, and the weaving of civic ground through processions and cartographies have as vital a role in the making of our physical environment as the choreography of assembling architectural structures. The intermediate or indeterminate conditions of ruins, episodic spaces, and sites of suspended construction are spaces of value in themselves, open as they are to occupation by the marginal, the emergence of new programs, and the projection of new architectural possibilities. This “setting the table,” the anticipatory aspect of projection, can be a bridge between the individual act of imagining and the collective act of constructing the city. Situating projection in relation to place and materiality, formulating post and proto architectural methodologies, instruments, and spaces that enable individuals and communities to engage their environment with imagination, resourcefulness, and empathy are the objectives of my ongoing research and practice.