IoA Institute of Architecture

University of Applied Arts Vienna

[applied] Foreign Affairs

Head: Assoc. Prof. Mag.arch Baerbel Mueller
Univ.-Ass. Mag.arch Jürgen Strohmayer
Univ.Ass. MArch Gregorio Lubroth

[a]FA is a lab investigating spatial, infrastructural, environmental and cultural phenomena in rural and urban Sub-Saharan Africa. A series of lectures introduces students to the spatial diversity and cultural vibrancy of the contemporary African condition, followed by workshops which focus on the status and potential of a specific region or situation. Projects center on distinct questions and culminate in field trips and residencies through which mappings, rural growth patterns, visionary art spaces, and relational physical interventions are produced. The process of relating and making is conceptualized in a transdisicplinary, reactive and slowed-down manner. Conventional relationships between client, community, and architect or studio, university, and field are questioned, and conditions of uncertainty and fragility are embraced.

[a]FA is performed in collaboration with international guests, teaching staff of the IoA, and with partner universities. [a]FA is commissioned by NGOs, UN organizations, cultural institutions, artist collectives and individuals. A selected number of students can participate after application, and partial scholarships are available. Students of related disciplines are most welcome. Residencies and field trips take place during semester breaks.

[a]FA projects have been awarded with the Helmut Richter Award 2015, the Buckminster Fuller Challenge Catalyst Program 2014, the National Energy Globe Award Ghana 2014, Neptun Wasserpreis 2014 (winner), the International Bauhaus.Solar Award 2012 (distinction), the Neptun Wasserpreis 2013 (nomination).