The Architecture of Immaterial Labour

Architectural Association000_MOBILES_BUeRO_01.jpg_projectimageHans Hollein, Mobiles Büro (Vienna, 1969)
City/Architecture PhD program
1st Round-Table Seminar

Wednesday January 28th from 16.00 to 18.00
32 Bedford Square, First Floor Front

The Architecture of Immaterial Labor
A Seminar with Andreas Rumpfhuber

A seminar organized by the City/Architecture PhD program

Administrating and networking are perhaps the most paradigmatic examples of a work form that has been closely connected to the radical reorganization of European societies since the 1950s and 1960s. Its rise to dominance involved an increased outsourcing of work processes, the popularization of cybernetic ideas for a new horizontal organization of society, and its promise of a new way of living together beyond despotic or disciplinary regimes. It was accompanied by the implementation of automata and calculating machines and the feasible utopia of leisure society. The talk will discuss three significant architectural examples of the 1950s and 1960s in which the emergence of this new labor paradigm and the consequences for the architectural practice become visible: the Bürolandschaft, Hans Hollein’s Mobile Office and John Lennon’s and Yoko Ono’s Bed-InPerformance.

Andreas Rumpfhuber is an architect and founder of Expanded Design. 

His research focuses on the intersection of architecture and economics.

He is presently heading the research project “The Office of Society/Architecture of Cybernetics of Organization” funded by the Austrian Science Fund and has recently completed the project “Scarcity and Creativity in the Built Environment”, co-initiated by Rumpfhuber and supported by the European Research Council (ESF/HERA) and reviewed as excellent.

 His publications include the books Architektur immaterieller Arbeit (Turia und Kant, 2013), The Design of Scarcity (with Jeremy Till et al., Strelka Press, 2014), and Modeling Vienna: Real Fictions in Social Housing (forthcoming: Turia und Kant: 2014).