High places looks for uncelebrated buildings in new territories. The ultimate aim is to reflect on the potential and ‘publicness’ of these findings, on the interior spaces they hold, and on the influences these spaces could have on the wider landscapes around them.
The investigation starts off from a few high points within the valley of the Rhone. These points are markers on the landscape, but they are also built heritage in the traditional sense, being occupied by several kinds of listed buildings. From there we head down towards the settlements and identify buildings and spaces of comparatively unknown heritage. Surveys of these spaces and studies of their precise configuration between the ‘high points’ and the riverbed are conducted, envisioning these buildings and locations as ‘active heritage’ by designing public projects. At a time when many new public buildings are bunker-like objects that turn their backs on the public domain (Swiss museums of the last decade are almost caricature-like examples), we aim to find other routes by learning from existing constructions.
This is an understanding of the architecture project as an attempt to measure what has collective value or not – what to keep and what to rethink – and to blur the hard categories (private, public, interior, exterior, urban, domestic, etc.) here and there. These projects put the old and the new side by side without erasing each other. Developed individually through spatial strategies and constructive details that foster this coexistence, they bring the spotlight to unknown heritage and its contemporary potential.
Elsa Audouin, Sarah Bentivegna, Robin Delerce, Azadeh Djavanrouh, Marina Ezerskaia, Thibault Krauer, Nourbonou Missidenti, Patrycja Pawlik, Louise Plassard, Patris Sallaku, Nobuyoshi Yokota, Léa Rime, Camila González Tapia & Elizaveta Krikun
Image Credits © Raphaëlle Mueller / HEAD-Genève