The Timisoara architecture annual a_ta 2014* started Monday, June 16th, from 6.30pm to 22.00pm at Casa Artelor (The House of Arts) on 8 Augustin Pacha st. Aproximately 160 persons attended the event, joining the organising team around the Chestnut courtyard.
The event offered the ideal pretence for the a_ta 2007-2013 retrospective exhibition vernissage. Panels of previous editions’ winning and nominated projects were mounted in an instalation that redefined the space enclosed in the Chestnut courtyard – this introvert space provided the suitable atmosphere for an overview of Timişoara’s best architectural projects in 2007-2013. The exhibition was succesfully crowned, both literally and figuratively, by artist Levente Kozma’s neon installation – the hovering light message “In our days it was different…” pointed nostalgically to the end of a period and to the promise of a new, different approach for a_ta 2014.
In these circumstances, the president of the Timiş branch of OAR (the Romanian Order of Architects), arch. Vlad Gaivoronschi inaugurated the event by addresing a warm welcome to those present and endorsed the initiative to acknowledge the 7 year history of a_ta. Arch. Adrian Ionaşiu, as coordinator of these previous editions, made a brief description of a_ta’s evolution during these years.
This year’s edition coordinator, arch. Oana Simionescu, advanced the concept and structure behind a_ta 2014. The theme for the 2014 annual, present!, was described as an open invitation to participation and involvement in matters concerning city, education, profession and community. A hint in this direction was offered by the introduction of representatives from partner organizations: landscape architect Andrei Condoroş spoke on behalf of the Western branch of the Romanian Landscape Architects Association while artist Levente Kozma explained the Simultan Association’s engagement within the project.
After these speeches concluded, participants were invited to taste a variety of “designed” appetisers and a glass of wine, on the video and audio background offered by SLOWDANCE.
We would like to warmly thank all those who joined us at this event, as well as acknowledge all those who helped organizing it.Organizing team: Oana Simionescu, Alexandru Cozma, Simina Cuc, Bogdan Isopescu, Robert Jianu, Alexandra Maier, Cristina Milici, Sergiu Sabău & Andreea Duminică. Volunteers: Alexandru Todirică, Cristina Turcu, Denisa Birtoc, Alexandra Spiridon, Maria Sgîrcea. Audio&video: SLOWDANCE – Florin Fâra Light installation: Levente Kozma, Simultan Association; installation realized during the WAITING SPACES II project. Appetisers: Andreea Pătroi & Oana Simionescu. Location: House of Arts – the Timis Cultural Directorate – Levente Kozma & Carmen Bayer. Photography: Ciprian Costache & Alexandru Todirică. Video: Farkas Pataki. Graphics: Alexandru Cozma. Sponsors: Ornella Design. Colaborators: Lipoplast, VELUX. *the Timişoara architecture annual is a project financed from the architectural services tax and is organized by the Timiş branch of OAR.
The 2014 edition of a_ta is themed ”present!”. The dual meaning of this word comes in contrast with a state of things defined by the absence of dialogue, involvement and, ultimately, the absence of the architectural profession from the context in which it activates.
Today, an architectural career is no longer a liniar, ascending vector, easily trackable and certain. The ability to reinvent the profession and to establish a creative practice which responds to the needs of our contemporary society – these are qualities promoted in today’s professional community. Architecture becomes increasingly complex as the array of its operations develops and expands. As a result, architects become process curators, depending on how they select their operating instruments.
In this respect, ”present!” can be interpreted as a possible approach to our internal context, in constant transition, defined by absence as the most visible shape of presence and by a present plagued by a lack of sensitivity towards the past and the future. Curating places, formal and informal, during a period of 6 months, through cultural actions and interventions is the means by which a desired presence will be materialized- our presence as organizers, architects and professional body.
Anuala Timișoreană de Arhitectură – a_ta is the most important professional event organized by the Timiş branch of the Romanian Order of Architects (OAR), with the financial support of the OAR. Dedicated to its members, but not only, the annual is conceived as an interface promoting interaction both within the profession and between architects and the context- social, cultural, civic- in which they operate.
The project’s main objective is to distinguish and promote excellence in architecture and, in doing so, to highlight exemplary professional practices. In this respect, the culmination of the annual is the gala during which projects enlisted in the competition are awarded. Moreover, by exhibiting the submitted projects, this process offers a general perspective on the architectural production of the current year.
Even though a_ta addresses mainly the architectural profession, a major goal of the project is to attract the general public’s interest in quality architecture and to engage it in the architectural phenomenon, of which it is the ultimate beneficiary. To this purpose, the a_ta events have a public dimension – the exhibition, debates, workshops and conferences are open to everyone – and a formative one – by exposing the community to the values of quality architecture.