BRIEF

In 1979 in Rome an event titled Roma Interrota was held by the Italian Incontri Internazionale d’arte. It assembled 12 renowned architects, with each assigned a panel from Giambattista Nolli’s 1736 plan of Rome and invited to “interrupt” the plan with their own architectural intervention. The event is a landmark with regard to issues of contextualism; that is, questions of how, in the wake of modernism, the new fits in with the old or, as the case may be, doesn’t.

Some five decades later it is safe to say that urban designers pay much more attention to context than they generally did prior to 1979. Indeed, the raison d’etre of landscape architecture since then has been to fit in with and enhance the existing ecology and culture of a place – to consolidate “a sense of place.” But fitting in and consolidating the status quo can not only be boring but profoundly wrong for today’s world. Why should we fit in with a world speeding headlong into a climate emergency, one that is increasingly shaped by false information and one increasing characterized by social inequity? Perhaps what we really need now are things that don’t fit, things that interrupt and disrupt so as to more boldly change hearts and minds, and redirect ecological and socio-economic flows.

Instead of just a stage for 12 famous white male architects, LA+ is creating a platform for anyone to take an established city or place and design their own INTERRUPTION within it. You can site your interruption anywhere and, if necessary, remove anything to make way for it. It can be an artwork, a garden, a building, a space, a thing, a barrier, an ambience, an opening, a catalyst, a performance, a program, an institution, an intervention, a folly... It can be any scale and it can be anywhere. Whatever and wherever it is, it must productively interrupt both its cultural and spatial context. What does this mean? It means injecting something different into a given context to effect new meanings and new functions. It means questioning what design does, who it’s designed for, what it looks like, and what it means.

All you need to do to enter your design is provide a plan, a concept image, and supporting imagery along with a short statement explaining the what, why, where, how, and benefit/s of your INTERRUPTION.

For submission requirements and competition Q+A, see separate tabs.



AWARDS

US $7,000 total prize money

First Prize
USD $4,000, a certificate, and feature publication in LA+ INTERRUPTION

Second Prize
USD $2,000, a certificate, and feature publication in LA+ INTERRUPTION

Third Prize
USD $1,000, a certificate, and feature publication in LA+ INTERRUPTION

Honorable Mentions
10 honorable mentions to receive a certificate and feature publication in LA+ INTERRUPTION

Editor’s Choice Award
LA+ Journal’s editor-in-chief will choose one notable but unawarded entry to receive publication in the LA+ INTERRUPTION Salon Des Refusés and a full set of LA+ Journal print issues #01–15.



SUGGESTED READINGS

Léa-Catherine Szacka, “Roma Interrotta: Postmodern Rome as the Source of Fragmented Narratives” in Dom Holdaway et Filippo Trentin (Eds.), Rome, Postmodern Narratives of a Cityscape (2013).

McPhearson, T., M. Raymond, C., Gulsrud, N. et al., “Radical changes are needed for transformations to a good Anthropocene” Urban Sustainability 1, 5 (2021).   

Christo and Jeanne-Claude (website).

Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, Manifesto of Futurism (1909).

Rem Koolhaas, “Whatever Happened to Urbanism?” Sprawl 164 (Spring 1995).

Anthony Dunne & Fiona Raby, Speculative Everything: Design, fiction and social dreaming (MIT Press, 2013).

Thomas Oles & Phoebe Lickwar, “Why so Serious, Landscape Architect?” LA+ Interdisciplinary Journal of Landscape Architecture 2 (2015), 82–83.

Guy Debord, The “Situationists” International Manifesto (1960).

Richard Weller, “The Critical Landscape Architectural Project” JoLA 3 (2018).

Dark Matter University, “Manifesto.”

Ivica Mitrović, “Introduction to Speculative Design Practice”.

Bernard Tschumi, “Six Concepts,” in Architecture and Disjunction (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1994).

WAI Architecture Think Tank, “Un-making ARCHITECTURE: An anti-racist architecture manifesto” The Architect’s Newspaper (15 June 2020).

Hansika Kapoor, “Misbehaving: being clever and wicked is a form of creativity,” Aeon (8 February 2019).

Brent Scott, “The Hacker Hacked,” Aeon (10 August 2015).



Got suggestions for other readings? Let us know.

ENTRY PLATFORM OPENS
January 10, 2022

SUBMISSION DEADLINE
July 1, 2022 at midnight (US Eastern Time) 

WINNERS ANNOUNCED
August 31, 2022

WINNERS + SELECTED ENTRIES PUBLISHED
The LA+ INTERRUPTION issue will be published in Spring 2023.






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