New platform, new view on architecture

Station.plus is an online TV station for architecture and any related issues. The website is edited by the Chair of Berlin-based Architect Arno Brandlhuber (Department of Architecture at ETH Zurich). Normally, architects and architecture students design and realize concepts and buildings. They draw plans and build models which – in the best case – communicate self-explanatory and unilaterally. But can architects do a TV-show? That’s new.

Station.plus dares this experiment and claims that the current design tools and methods are long outdated. Instead, it understands architecture as more than an object. It is time-related and defined by its context and programme. Station.plus is an attempt to decentralize the view of architecture as an object and to give a new dimension to our habits of seeing our built environment.

Moreover, the makers of Station.plus see another important potential: The format of “storytelling” enhances the development of arguments in favour of architecture. Consequently, it then enables to occupy a related political position. Station.plus uses various episodic formats. Not least in order to make its contents accessible to as many people as possible. The space in which architecture is currently being discussed is thus questioned and expanded. The chosen formats range from “talk shows” over “online-lectures” to “fictional series”.

In seven episodes, the series “STILL LIVING 7/7” tells the story of a young man looking for a place to live. He completely gives up his private sphere in order to become part of the fictional project “IKEA Housing”. Where Ikea used to have beautifully furnished showrooms, they now make real people move in. A sales strategy in which the showrooms will look even more real. The trade is simple: Free living space for complete transparency. However, the series is more than entertainment. It entertainingly draws attention on relevant current topics, such as the political question of land and the associated housing issue. Station.plus is not just producing content. For this platform it is a compilation of videos that they “like, admire, disagree and (don’t) understand”.

If architecture is meant to be a contemporary concern, then the use of time-related media seems a logical consequence. Station.plus is a clever experiment that removes architecture from its classical view as an object. Instead, it incorporates economic, political and social levels. Station.plus seems to be a successful approach to free architecture and architectural theory from its rigid representation and discussion formats. Better late than never.

The platform Station.plus can be visited under the following link: http://station.plus/