On September 10th 2010, the Civic Friche exhibition opened at the Taubman College of Architecture + Urban Planning gallery.

Part inhabitable diagram, part scenographic installation, the exhibit functioned as a physical manifestation of the research amassed over the course of the spring semester in France and Belgium. The ambition of the assembly was to define Civic Friche as an architectural and urban typology. Concentrating on seven critical examples of the phenomenon, it proposed a comparative analysis that might function as a kit of parts for speculative interventions.

The scenographic insertion, a simple luan U, served to block the existing glass partition adjacent to the building’s circulation. A tactical reorientation, the new surface served to expand the spatial potential of the gallery interior. On the exterior, rough plywood in the spirit of construction site barrier with peep holes, performed as interactive signage.

To organize the research material – photography, models, maps, diagrams and texts – the installation deployed a system of color coded bands running from the collaged photography wall to context maps routed into the floor surface, folded onto the vertical planes of the model stands, to the scaled models of each site. The mapped color bands continued back to the floor and up the facing wall. Removable books that included the research work were mounted to the wall. Photographic material was projected onto the far end of the gallery.

The seven sites:

Cité du Design, Saint Étienne, LIN Architects

Aureole 14, St Nazaire, LIN Architects

Le Chanel, Calais, Patrick Bouchain + Loïc Julienne

Lieu Unique, Nantes, Patrick Bouchain + Loïc Julienne

Belle de Mai, Marseille, Patrick Bouchain

Le Pass, Frameries, Belgium, Laurent Niget

Palais de Tokyo, Paris, Lacaton & Vassal