Guillermo Fernández-Abascal is an architect, academic, co-director of GFA2, and lecturer at UTS Sydney. Based in Sydney, Australia and Santander, Spain, his recent work destabilises the dichotomy of research vs. buildings and includes diagrams, stories, exhibitions, films, prototypes, housing, and public buildings across the globe.
Can supervise: YES
Cooper, J, Enstrom-Gibb, L & Fernández-Abascal, G 2019, Quality, Control.
The publication collects the semester discussions and materializes them
into a book. 10 short essays (each participant reflecting on one specific
work of their rival), 60 architectural documents (presented along the
lectures) and 10 critical contributions(short pieces contextualising the
discussion) will generate an intergenerational narrative of this historical
debate that may or not may exist any longer. The book includes texts by AKAS, Baracco+Wright, Andrew Burns, Angelo Candalepas, Scott Colman, Edition Office, Philip Goad, Tristen Hardwood, Mike Hewson, Luisa King, Andrew Leach, Carey Lyon, Desley Luscombe, Ian Moore, Other Architects, panovscott, Andrew Power, Howard Raggatt, Gerard Reinmuth, Sibling Architecture, Richard Stampton, Naomi Stead, Luke Tipene, TRIAS, Leon Van Schaik and John Wardle.
Fernández-Abascal, G & García-Germán, J 2018, Documentos (por venir).
These texts in English and Spanish are illustrated by emerging Spanish architects. --Publisher website.
Our biggest challenge as architect's, and the urgent task of architecture today, is to learn new ways of existing with Earth's matter rather than consuming it. (Earth) Room reimagines the fragile composition of our Earth in its four spheres - the lithosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and atmosphere - not our national, nor global, political climates. Seeking to provoke new ways of belonging to Earth, (Earth) Room reorients conversation away from ownership of the Earth's resources to instead ponder our coexistence with its material and chemical parts. Earth belongs to everyone, and no one.
(Earth) Room was exhibited at the 2019-2020 Fellowship Exhibition: Practice, Product, Protocol at Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan, curated by Jacob Comerci, Matīss Groskaufmanis and Eduardo Mediero.
The kerb is a simple demarcation between two spaces: the roadway and the sidewalk. It serves as a separation between pedestrians and cars, as a key water management tool and helps to retain the edge of the top layer of pavement.
It is a seemingly mundane object, it exemplifies the change of section specific only to urban conditions, it is a highly contested piece of urban real estate and its main importance derives from its role in fixing the minor but vital space required for the negotiation of cohabitation
between humans and machines. The prototype is not about kerbs but about objectivity, trust, safety, surveillance, urbanization and beauty among other topics.
Driver Less Kerbs of Shenzhen explores the ridges that still divide human and machine vision, allowing the audience to delve into the realms of the incommensurable, the micro, the environmental and the speculative through the ultimate piece of urban infrastructure: the kerb, presented in a film and as a mockup.
The film Driver Less Kerbs of Shenzhen explores how objects are more than a material assemblage. They also include the social entities that they represent. The film aims to understand how these ordinary objects participate in city politics exploring the ways that kerbs resignify facts in the public sphere. The film's close reading of the current condition of Shenzhen's kerbs—via human and machine vision (cameras and photogrammetry) and legislative urban frameworks (city manuals)—unveils how they are an essential part of urban controversies that discuss water collection, pedestrian safety, accessibility, temporary usage or infrastructural maintenance among others. Yet kerbs are not just objects of political deliberation. They are participants in shifting political assemblages. Seemingly mundane objects, their crucial involvement in the city's infrastructure changes on the arrival of driverless cars to illustrate the powerful role they play in the negotiation of cohabitation between human and non-human entities.
The three kerb prototypes are the first post-human infrastructure. Their future deployment in everyday scenarios will generate public awareness of the socio-technical controversies that surround driverless technologies. They render visible the differences between human and machine vision through variations in their geometry, materiality, finish and texture: (1) a standard profile cut in grey granite with a polished finish; (2) a pragmatic profile carved in decadent pink marble with informative engravings; and (3) an iconic profile shaped in a deep black stone with a referential pattern. These three objects form the first family of Shenzhen's new ke...
Grau, U & Fernandez-Abascal, G 2019, 'Driver Less Vision / DESIGNS FOR DIFFERENT FUTURES', DESIGNS FOR DIFFERENT FUTURES, Yale University Press, Philadelphia Museum of Art (October 22, 2019–March 1, 2020) Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (September 12, 2020–January 3, 2021) The Art Institute of Chicago (January 23–May 2, 2021).
Through 100 designs--defined expansively, from lab grown organs and robotic companions to smart cities, nationwide literacy projects, and outer space tourism--this exhibition engages complex confluences of design,
science, and technology, emphasizing how designers are responding to human needs, desires, and fears and synthesizing the unimaginable with the incremental, and the iterative with the apocalyptic in an effort to help
further an understanding of the near and far future.
Futures take up no definite space or time. Tomorrows inhabit a fuzzy chronological logic for many of us, simultaneously now, part of our present, and something to come. We all understand the world in different ways
depending on where and how we live, and asymmetric access to resources means that the agency to design and activate desired futures is unevenly distributed.
Design and designers can help us understand and chart a path through these amorphous and freighted avenues, opening up discussion rather than presenting the future as a fait accompli, and offering the tools to
understand and, if needed, take a critical stance in relation to the promises and perils of advanced technologies. From the practical to the conceptual, the projects presented here allow us all to comprehend the possible, debate the inevitable, dream the unreachable, and weigh the alternatives.
development of a conceptual masterplan for the KARIT project for Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC). The KARIT master plan area is connected to the Kabul City Urban Design Framework, consisting of two planning proposals for adjacent areas prepared by Sasaki Associates: the "Dar Ul-Aman Corridor" plan to the southeast and "Massoud Boulevard-Airport Road" proposal to the northwest. These plans are focused on developing "corridors" along key vehicular arteries, with the creation of perpendicular linkages to low-density residential fabric. The KARIT site is situated in the core of the historic city and provides a critical "link" between the corridor plans.
Seoul, Republic of Korea, September, 2017 — Commissioned by the curators of the inaugural Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism, open September 2, 2017 through December ??, 2017 at the Donuimun Museum Village, Seoul, SK. Driver Less Vision presents the immersive experience of becoming an autonomous, self-driving vehicle.
Created by Urtzi Grau (Fake Industries Architectural Agonism), Guillermo Fernandez-Abascal with Perlin Studios, the project was produced with virtual reality video and architectural design by the New York-based teams, and installed in a 25' dome at the Seoul Biennale.
Driver Less Vision examines the tension and reality of AI and humans merging and diverging as they negotiate Seoul's unique urban landscape—challenging us to consider how we can design cities for the future of autonomous vehicles.
Driver Less Vision aims to generate empathy between humans and non-humans, to construct the trust required for negotiations that will settle how we will live together. By overlapping human and machine's perceptions, the installation helps to identify the areas of the city that will need to be redesigned in the immediate future.
Driver Less Vision is the immersive experience of becoming an autonomous, self-driving vehicle. It explores the untapped conflicts and disruptive effects on the built environment caused by the deployment of technologies for autonomous mobility. Currently, the visual stimuli that organizes traffic is designed for human perception. The arrival of driverless cars entails the emergence of a omnidirectional gaze that is required to negotiate existing visual codes. To assume that driverless cars will fully adapt to future conditions of the city, however, neglects the history of transformations in urban streetscapes associated with changes in vehicular technologies. Driver Less Vision is an attempt to understand how driverless cars will change the city by immersing the audience in an urban journey through the car's point of vie...
Fernandez-Abascal, G 2019, 'Remarks on Contemporary', COAM, Madrid.