Synopsis: AGENDA. JDS ARCHITECTS (NEW ED.): CAN WE SUSTAIN OUR ABILITY TO CRISIS?
AGENDA is a catalog of 365 days, like a diary or journal: a collective narrative, personal and subjective. It documents the work and thinking of JDS Architects over a specific year marked by crisis, beginning on September 15th, 2008, the day that Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy. The form of the book exploits the double meaning of its title, presenting the absurdities of day-to-day architectural practice while also staking our intent. Rather than a definitive direction, our agenda is a definitive attitude - of eagerness, enthusiasm, and optimism, of criticality and concern, of fun and inquiry. It is a directive, a motivation to act, at times without clear knowledge of where our agenda will lead. Change,A" the buzzword of the last U.S. presidential campaign, is the order of the day, and the task of AGENDA is to explore what kind of change will be needed if architects are to assume a political and social agency in this new landscape. Bringing together diverse forms of content, AGENDA is a product of vigilant observation, introspection, and engagement with outside thinkers and collaborators - artists, curators, politicians, authors, economists, journalists, developers, educators, and architects. AGENDA is a record of search and research, providing more questions than answers. AGENDA is unapologetically naive. AGENDA is an unorthodox architecture novel. AGENDA demystifies the practice of architecture, revealing process, research, fun, and failure. AGENDA looks to both the past and the future. JDS/Julien De Smedt Architects is a multidisciplinary office that focuses on architecture and design, from large scale urban planning to furniture to design. The office is fuelled by talented designers and experienced architects who jointly develop projects from the early sketch to on-site supervision. Independent of scale, this outlines an approach that is affirmatively social in its outcome, enthusiastic in its ambition and professional in its method. JDS is founded and directed by Julien de Smedt, co-founder of PLOT. Contributions from: Hans Ulrich Obrist, Lars von Trier, Bruce Sterling, Ernesto Neto, Pascal Smet, Michael Speaks, Geoff Manaugh, Brendan McGetrick, Barbara Vanderlinden, Sozyone Gonzalez, Angelo Consoli, Bruno Brunet, Hans Ibelings, Tom Avermaete, Robert Winkel, Eric Corijn, Roland Legrand, Hugh Maaskant, Cleon Peterson, Albert Ravestein, Selecao Brusseleira I'm a great believer in crisis.A" - Bruce Sterling If I were an architect, I think I would like to just work with one kind of brick, and see what I could make with it.A" - Lars von Trier Maybe the city of Brussels has to go broke in order for real change to occur, and I think we are not far away from that point.A" - Pascal Smet