University of Illinois at Chicago
School of Architecture
3100 Architecture & Design Studios
845 W Harrison Street (MC 030)
Chicago IL 60607

A Certain Kind of Life
Associated Project to the 5th Lisbon Architecture Triennale The Poetic of Reason, supported by the Office of the Vice Chancellor of Research at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts

A Certain Kind of Life explores the typology of the Carthusian monastery as an architecture of absolute rationality, wherein the form of life cannot be detached from the space and rituals of the liturgy it shelters. Drawing from nine centuries of monastic architecture, the project reconsiders asceticism as a way to critically meditate upon the present living and working conditions: a necessary estrangement to look closely at reality, its daily gestures and rituals. In a contemporary condition wherein maximum integration generates maximum alienation, rudimental practices of asceticism offer a strategy of resistance and an antidote against collective hypnosis, social bonds, constructed farces and behaviors: a form of productive rationalism, to conduct life under constant thought by dispelling anxieties of endless competition, consumerism, and the consequential illusions of promise. Taking place at the Cartuxa de Laveiras as associated project to the 2019 Lisbon Architecture Triennale, interventions across the site include: the cell for a certain individual or, the architectural evocation of a worldly asceticism; an atlas detailing the Charterhouse typology; and Deserts, an exhibition of prototypes for contemporary living, distilling the rationalism of daily rituals into architectural forms through specific procedures in space.

Jimmy Carter, Abigail Chang, Francesco Marullo, and Agata Siemionow.
(Photographs: Ibai Rigby)