Architectures of Order-Fellowship

The application deadline for the 2023 academic year fellowship has now passed. No further calls for applications will follow at this point.

Fellowship 2023

Call for Applications

The fellowship program aims to expand the thematic scope and expertise of the resident research group as well as its national and international net- works. It provides two fellows per year with the opportunity to spend a re- search stay of 1-3 months in Frankfurt am Main or Darmstadt, GER. Fellows are expected to work in Frankfurt or Darmstadt and to participate in the scientific life and events of the LOEWE research cluster “Architectures of Order”. We accept applications from scholars at all career levels (applicants are required to hold a PhD). The work of the fellow should demonstrate connections with the goals of the project as well as its annual research theme.

The 2023 Annual Theme “Order I Disorder”

Previous inquiries of the LOEWE research cluster “Architectures of Order” have shown us that spatial knowledge provides us with an understanding of our world and a capacity to order it – a capacity prominently mobilized in the field of architecture. Prerequisite for this is a constant observance of notions of disorder: From disorder to order, we foray into matters at hand until we feel able to grasp what is at play. We find new logics where we did not see them before, perceive new patterns in a seemingly disordered world. But in an equally great number of circumstances, we observe processes evolving from order to disorder. Based on this order | disorder dialectic, the question our latest annual theme aims to tackle the evolution of the notion of order as imminently dependent on disorder with its changes and discontents through-out time. Within this large framework, we invite novel takes on two subject areas: Reevaluation of the concept of the ruin as testament to life cycles of urban orders and, focusing on architectural practice, the dynamics of order | disorder in computational design.

In the 20th century, many works have been dedicated to the relentless identifications of urban and architectural orderly patterns – even in the most spontaneous formations. Our first point of departure focuses on urban areas that showcase contrasted geographies, sometimes brutal confrontations of highly regulated planning with hems of hectic and messy developments. Hence, ruins of physical destruction and decay provide examples of the shifting notions of order. Similarly, ruins are testament to social orders erupted as governance evolves, as war annihilates or as rights are challenged. These changes leave areas of public life to ruin, or even actively destroy them. This is yet one example of this duality we are especially interested in, as well as the superpositions of formations that the study of urban planning reveals. Ruins then indicate what is not anymore a relevant symbol of order. Ruins also invite the use of spolia, testimonies of the reintegration of old elements in a new order. Such observations invite questioning: What do we recognize as valid order | disorder criteria at a given period? How can we account for the obsolescence of design models? Where lie the potentials of engaging with destructed environments? How did (and currently, can) architectural practice approach destruction and chaos from a perspective of care and creation rather than reconstruction?

Such speculations suggest the existence of alternative forms of order to those we are used to. This introduces our second point of departure: From quantum physics to neuroscience, exploring seemingly disorder has been at the source of novel models of computation in the past few decades. Architecture is no exception as computation plays an increasing role in conception of design models since the 1960s. Random and statistical variations play a key role in the resort to computational design tools. In it, the question is raised as to when increasing complexity is equated with disorder, or whether there can be such a thing as chaos under the paradigm of computer-based generation and analysis. It is therefore necessary to question the modalities of computing chaos and the interaction that this notion creates between order and disorder.
Questioning the order | disorder dynamic compels further interrogation whether – and why – some things resist ordering, and what the confrontation to such resistance bears. The latest techniques developed in artificial intelligence aim at enhancing our capabilities in recognizing patterns in spheres of absolute disorder by resorting to machine learning. Especially the observation of nature presents a source of inspiration for the development of many models of ordering, and consequently tools for architectural design. Therefore, we propose to ask: How can such novel perception lead to new and more complex orders more in tune with the environmental challenges our societies encounter? Can the confrontation with natural models of order as well as resources, such as biomaterials, entail the acceptance of a potential resistance to human order?

Fellowship Positions and Applicant Requirements

The first position offered focuses on epistemological questions within architecture and urban history and design practice. It should strongly articulate the reflection to the Order | Disorder annual theme. The candidates are required to hold a PhD in the field of architecture and/or the humanities, including but not limited to architecture history, architecture theory, art history, cultural and media studies, history of science, history, and sociology and have solid experience in the area selected for the proposal.

The second position offered focuses on design practices within the annual theme. Three areas have been identified as possible fields for the proposal: Robotic Fabrication, Bio-Design, and Generative Design. Regardless of the selected area, the proposed work should result primarily in a design production (prototype(s), drawing(s), fabrication experiment(s), etc.). It should also articulate the production to the Order | Disorder annual theme: In what way can digital tools help interrogate the ordering methods at play in architectural design? The candidates are required to hold a PhD in architecture, engineering or in a related field and have solid experience in the area selected for the proposal, i.e. programming and/or robotic skills. A strong knowledge of computational practices in architecture is expected. Robotic fabrication means will be provided to the fellow if necessary in the form of an access to the DDU infrastructures at TU Darmstadt – please report to the DDU website for more information relating to available means.

We accept applications from scholars of all career levels, and particularly welcome interest from early career researchers. Passive knowledge of German is desirable.

Involvement

During their fellowship, the fellows are members of the research group. They are expected to actively participate in the events of the LOEWE research cluster. The events are held partially in German and partially in English. At the beginning of the fellowship, the fellows have the opportunity to present their project in an internal event. The results will then be presented in a final lecture. In addition, the fellows are expected to participate in the program by designing a workshop and by offering regular consultation hours to facilitate the exchange with doctoral students.

Duration

We accept applications for stays of 1-3 months, contingent on the scope and requirements of the proposed research project. The exact start date and duration of fellowships will be discussed with the fellow following a successful application. Please note that the stay should concur with the teaching summer term at Goethe University Frankfurt (April–July).

Stipends

Fellows will receive a monthly stipend of 3,200 Euro during their stay. Stipends are meant to cover costs for accommodation, board, insurance etc. We will furthermore cover the costs of an economy roundtrip to Frankfurt am Main, GER.

Application

Please send your application including the following documents compiled in one PDF file by 20 November 2022 to Lena Holbein: holbein@kunst.uni-frankfurt.de

Project proposal – approximately 1000 words

The proposal should briefly introduce the research project and address how it connects to the aims of the LOEWE project and the annual theme. It is also supposed to demonstrate the relevance of the project, locate it within current debates and specify your goals and plans for the fellowship.

Work schedule – approximately 500 words

Please provide a brief schedule that demonstrates how you plan to spend your time during the fellowship.

CV

A CV of no more than 4 pages

PhD certificate

Proof of the successful completion of the required academic qualifications

Writing sample

This can be an article or a chapter from a more comprehensive piece of writing of at least 10 and no more than 20 pages.

Referees

Please provide contact details for two referees.

Contact

For content-related questions, please contact Dr. Nadja Gaudillière-Jami: gaudilliere@dg.tu-darmstadt.de

For general information on the fellowship program, please contact:

Dr. Lena Holbein
Project Coordinator – LOEWE Research Cluster Architectures of Order
holbein@kunst.uni-frankfurt.de
phone +49(0)69-798-28705

LOEWE Research Cluster Architectures of Order
Art History Department
Goethe University Frankfurt | Campus Bockenheim
Juridicum | Senckenberganlage 31
60325 Frankfurt am Main
Germany