Volume I

From July 1-20 2017, in collaboration with the University of the Aegean, SIFF hosts volume I, a workshop in which the Diplomates design studio re-localizes its urban and social laboratory, Kassandras, to Syros, within the context of the fifth Syros International Film Festival. Over two weeks, the workshop will conceive and implement the design and production of the festival’s central kiosk, a series of micro-architectural objects, and other interventions in the festival’s physical and social landscape.

Kassandras exists as a distinct and potential found space in the Athenian landscape of abandoned construction sites and derelict buildings. Located in the Votanikos district, it inhabits a skeletal concrete structure acting as a laboratory of research in architectural prototyping and experimentation. Made up of a workshop and a studio/event space, its top three floors lack most of their walls. It adopts an integrated approach to design and creation, focusing on the development of design strategies and creative processes. Kassandras deliberates on concepts of temporality and flux, proposing a long-term ephemeral architecture.

By re-localizing Kassandras’ workshop for a three-week residency on Syros, this project deliberates temporality through gestures that explore the intermediate territories between permanence and ephemerality, specifically within the context of the apparition and disappearance of a festival. Instead of designing an ephemeral scenario, Volume I sets up a process based on longevity and work-in-progress with the aim of connecting subsequent editions of the festival to each other, as well as linking participating students themselves to new territories for daily experimentations. The construction of skeletal micro- architectural objects gives students opportunities to implement their own designs, upgrading and developing them between festival editions, bringing the festival its own local vocabulary.

Volume I explores a working methodology that relies on the unexpected and un-designed realities of the production process. While the collaboration will begin with a developed construction strategy and visual vocabulary, the “making” process itself is the instrumental phase in which the physical manipulation of materials defines the project in experiential terms. The project thus integrates and augments the capacity of the process of production to inform the final outcome through continuously reactive design decisions.