Marc Maxey

Marc Maxey

Santa Monica, CA, US


Owning Up To Architecture: Materials, Mortgages, and the Agency of Financial Instruments

In the current era of post-political urbanism where cities can go through bankruptcy under a non-elected emergency manager—the contemporary neoliberal model of austerity urbanism—resistance is achieved through subverting the latent financial conditions toward architectural outcomes. As Foucault says, neoliberalism’s ideal subject is an entrepreneur of himself, which necessitates, as Jack Self points out, that any post-neoliberal architecture must work within the confines of neoliberalism itself and therefore be financially profitable.

This thesis is an approach to architecture and spatial outcomes through financial instrumentality. It is not site specific, but can be applied to any site using the same approach: that active forms in architecture are just as, if not more powerful than, the objects. Without abandoning an aesthetically motivated architectural practice, I am arguing for an expanded role of the architect by considering ownership structures, financing, and zoning as instruments to be designed and subverted toward architectural ends. In that sense, this thesis operates from scale of the detail to the scale of financial markets. 

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Status: School Project
Location: Princeton, NJ, US
Additional Credits: Thesis Advisor: Andrés Jaque