Éric Lapierre (1966) is an architect, architecture teacher (theory and project design), theoretician of architecture, writer and curator, based in Paris. His buildings, greeted for their theoretical dimensions, as well as for their quality as built artefacts, are regularly awarded. He teaches since twenty years at the school of architecture of Paris-Est (Marne-la-Vallée), where he leads the master Architecture & Experience (research seminar, project design and diplomas). Those last years he has taught at Accademia di Architettura at Mendrisio, Université de Montréal, and UQAM (Montréal). He is currently guest teachers at EPFL (project design in second year of Bachelor) and is chief curator of the Lisbon Triennal of architecture 2019 (The Poetics Of Reason). His works as professional and as teacher, that are inscribed in a single movement, are about the possibility of keeping architecture as a sophisticated cultural medium in the ordinary condition, and about the way this seemingly non positive condition is actually a positive occasion to redefine architecture and deepen our understanding about it. He tries to define the specificity of architectural rationality through his researches about surrealism and economy of means and, more recently, through a research about the history of environment. He also writes about photography and is engaged in the creation of live musical performances linked to architecture in his own construction sites and buildings.
Beyond The Death Of Language
1.1 Architecture used to be a common language. After the crisis of Classical architecture, the failure of Modern Movement architects to establish a new unified language, followed by the Post-Modern manipulations dead-end, we have now to accept the death of language as an opportunity to explore new dimensions of architecture.
1.2 The mass construction that occurred since the beginning of 20th century changes drastically the meaning and status of architecture: repetition and typical tends to supplant the unique ; ordinary materials replace exceptional ones ; industrial process destroy craftsmanship and traditional knowhow ; conditions of production of buildings do not allow anymore architects to control the whole conception of their projects. Architecture has entered into an ordinary condition.
2.1 Thus, how can architecture continues to make buildings communicate if it is no more a common language?
2.2 How can architecture continue to be the sophisticated cultural discipline it has always been in this contemporary ordinary condition?
3.1 Economy of means gives the guidelines for a critical approach of production means at large, which guarantees the possibility to produce buildings that are intelligible by anyone because they generate the rules to define their form.
3.2 Anyone that has lost the use of one of his five senses over develops the other ones. When architecture turns to be mute new themes appear: space, ontological plan, materiality, context, and so on…