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Phantom Theory

28 September 2017 - 20 December 2017

Exhibition “Phantom Theory”
29 September – 20 December 2017
Opening 28 September 2017, 5.30 pm
gta exhibitions, HIL, ETH Zurich, Hönggerberg

Introduction by Sylvia Claus

Using projects, manuscripts, lecture drafts, models, exhibition concepts and images from the gta Archives, the exhibition presents the rich spectrum of questions and differing narrations with which the institute has been preoccupied over the course of half a century and that have productively shaped architectural praxis.
The aspect that connects all of the researchers at the institute during this era and beyond is the constantly renewed aim to extract models from history as propositions for contemporary architecture. Nevertheless, what in historical retrospect appears to possess coherence often eludes ascertainment in everyday praxis. Seen from this perspective, theory is comparable to a ghost unable to find its last resting place.

Debate “End of Theory?”
28 September 2017, 6.30 pm
HIL E 4, ETH Zurich, Hönggerberg

Peter Eisenman, Kurt W. Forster, Jacques Herzog
Introduction by Philip Ursprung

Following the conference, on the evening of 28 September Peter Eisenman, Kurt W. Forster and Jacques Herzog will discuss whether the theory of architecture has arrived at an end. Whereas Eisenman and Forster belonged to the proponents of a close dovetailing of theory and praxis in the 1970s and 1980s, Jacques Herzog represents the absorption of theory in the works of a star architect at the turn of the millennium.

Conference “Founding Myths”
28 September 2017, 10 am – 4.30 pm
HIL E 4, ETH Zurich, Hönggerberg

10.30 Welcome by Laurent Stalder
11.00 Alina Payne
11.30 Stanislaus von Moos
12.00 Adrian Forty
Moderated by Vittorio Magnago Lampugnani

14.00 Mari Hvattum
14.30 Mario Carpo
Moderated by Ákos Moravánszky

15.30 François Charbonnet
16.00 Momoyo Kaijima
Moderated by Maarten Delbeke

Round-Table Discussion “Perspectives”
29 September 2017, 8.30 am – 6.30 pm
Semperaula, ETH Zurich, Zentrum

8.30 –10.30 History
Maarten Delbeke with Andreas Beyer,
Vittoria Di Palma, Brigitte Sölch,
Tristan Weddigen and Richard Wittman

11.00 –13.00 Presence
Ita Heinze-Greenberg with
Maristella Casciato, Ruth Hanisch,
Sonja Hildebrand, Bernd Nicolai
and Joan Ockman

14.00 –16.00 Praxis
Laurent Stalder and Marie Theres
Stauffer with Christophe van Gerrewey,
Fabio Gramazio, Elli Mosayebi,
Martino Stierli and Georg Vrachliotis

16.30 –18.30 Theory
Philip Ursprung and Torsten Lange with
Richard Anderson, Cynthia Davidson,
Murray Fraser, Susanne Hauser,
Mari Lending and Stephan Trüby

Architecture, more than any other area of knowledge, requires the idea of a beginning. The topic of the founding myth— that of the gta Institute and the ETH’s school of architecture too—is therefore the common denominator for a series of contributions by international researchers. Whilst the proceedings on 28 September are dedicated to the fundamentals of the discipline, on 29 September a large roundtable discussion pursues the current situation and the future of the history and theory of architecture as an academic discipline.



28 September 2017
21 December 2017
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gta exhibitions


ETH Hönggerberg
Stefano- Franscini-Platz 5, 8049 Zürich Schweiz
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