Building a New ‘Commons’

The studio will be divided in two: the initial weeks of the semester will be research-oriented, while the latter weeks of the semester will be for developing proposals. We propose a relational view of networks as a methodology for analyzing global care chains, specifically the ones between Mexico and the United States. Networks are essentially relational processes with distinct time- and space-specific contexts, and in order to understand them, we need to look into the socio-spatial constitution of the individuals, collectives, and institutions that comprise them.

Through this lens, each member of the studio will be asked to investigate the actors, ongoing relationships, and the spatial manifestations of a specific global care chain (maintenance and cleaning, food preparation, household administration, child care, elder care, and waste management, to name a few). Students will present their findings to the studio, and the research will be collected into a shared resource.

The studio will tentatively travel to Mexico City. While there, we will expand on our research, visit key sites, and meet with a variety of figures who can shed additional light on the complex relationship between domestic space and broader (global) international networks.
During the course of the semester, we will develop a shared discourse, expanding upon these notions of global care chains with both critical readings, and architectural and artistic precedents.