Simultaneously acting as exhibition, discussion tool, and architectural manifesto, “What About It? Solo Exhibition” presented for the first time a physical collection of the intellectual provocations, architectural narratives, and theoretical adventures of WAI Architecture Think Tank.
Founded in Brussels in 2008 by French Architect Nathalie Frankowski, and Puerto Rican Architect Cruz Garcia, WAI aims to develop tools that could contribute to the collective intelligence of architecture.
“What About It?” features fourteen of WAI’s published, on-going and unreleased projects, which are presented by way of abstract animations, provocative collages, analytical drawings, descriptive storyboards, self published magazines, and twelve scale models. The projects oscillate from pure research (Cities of the Avant-Garde, Megastructures are the Shopping Malls of the Avant-Garde, The Shapes of Hardcore Architecture), to theoretical provocations (Wall Stalker, The Glamour Series, WAIzine) , to urban and architectural experiments (The Story of the Wall, The Story of the Tower, Vertical Omotesando, The Institute of Optimistic Architectures, Football School and Training Center.)
Reacting in response to magazine editorials, exhibition calls, commissions, design and ideas competitions, and as self imposed research projects, the pieces exhibited share a common critical stance against the status quo of architecture as a discipline and as an intellectual tool.
Sponsored by standardarchitecture, CU Space, and the Institute of Optimistic Architectures the exhibition recognizes a new epicenter for the global architectural intelligentsia. The unique conditions presented by CU Space and the 798 Art District, epitomize one of the endless possibilities, Beijing as a cultural foreground.
“What About It?” is a manifesto for a new form of architectural criticism that includes research at its core, promotes the use of architecture as a tool for progressive thinking, and calls for the use of intellectual processes to carry the discipline forward.
WAI announces a space for fresh ideas that, independent from the interest of institution, and schools, opens a new landscape of optimistic possibilities. WAI calls for a global asking of “What About It.” WAI asks for an international Workshop for Architectural Intelligentsia.