École d’architecture
de la ville & des territoires

Winter school

Architecture as Choreography

Du Monday 31 January 2022
au Friday 4 February 2022
à l'École d'architecture de la ville & des territoires

Curator : Ahmed Belkhodja, fala atelier, guest professor

In order to experiment with new pedagogies the School has been organizing an intensive inter-grade workshop since 2016. This short one-week exercise gives 2nd, 3rd and 4th year students the opportunity to work together on cross-cutting reflections on the city, the territory and architecture.

For this new edition, placed under the curatorship of Ahmed Belkhodja, fala atelier, the Architecture workshop is evolving and is now open to international students.

Architecture as Choreography
Choreography, the theme chosen by the curator affirms the desire to celebrate the recovery of the party in our collective space, and takes as a starting point an open analogy. If the building, the city, the territory, and the life that inhabits them are objects in concerted transformation, then they are dancing. Their study can thus be qualified as choreography.

Two interdependent axes feed this study:
a) To be a choreographer is to be interested in a kind of plural movement («chorus»). Each built environment allows certain movements, and excludes others. But a constructed environment is also made of multiple and comprehensible movements;
b) To be a choreographer is to be interested in a form of drawing or writing («graphy»). Each observed, calculated, or envisaged form asks to be represented, or simply presented. Each line drawn, even by the clicks of a mouse, is a gesture that seeks itself.
The week will be an opportunity to observe new or neglected things, and to sharpen new tools to apprehend the familiar. The pivot of the doors will cohabit with the wandering of cats, their masters, the jackhammer, the
trajectory of the pencil, the ink jet, the cutter...
The week will end with a big celebration for which a dance floor will have been collectively designed.
After a call for projects that attracted 90 candidates, including groups of architects, graphic designers, choreographers, art directors and filmmakers, Ahmed Belkhodja has selected 11 workshop projects related to
the theme 2022.
Historically dedicated to the students of the École d’architecture de la ville & des territoires Paris-Est, the workshop becomes a spring school open to all French and international students in the fields of architecture, urban planning, art and design.

11 workshops


Supervised by Ahmed Belkhodja, Valeria Samovich, Leonid Slonimskiy, Radim Louda, Maxime Delvaux, Diana Ibáñez López

The top of the auditorium is the open space we will take over. It is both unique and nicely undefined, a slope
floating in mid air. There, we will ‘make a scene’. The participants are split in studios facing each other. What is
presented by studio X on day 1, becomes the basis of what studio Y presents on day 2, etc. A variety of objects
are studied, a variety of mediums are embraced. Each day is a movement that draws on what happened on the
previous one. The sloped platform is a constantly evolving scene, vibrant and collective.

10 sqm dancing

Supervised by Antoine Barjon, Ikram Benchrif and Paul Girard

10 sqm dancing is a sensitive experience of space that attempts to consider architecture outside the knowledge
that defines it. It is a question of inhibiting, of momentarily suspending the usual habits and tools of the
participants to inhabit various spaces of the school differently: a new measure of the place by the means of
practices of movement, of «trapped dances». What object could emerge from this state of attention, of «non-
knowledge»: a dancing object? An object that makes people dance? Or simply a dance of the place?


Supervised by Bryana Fritz and Emmanuelle Raoul-Duval

Bodybuiling is composed of the words body and building. This binding of images urges us to imagine the body as a material that we can model, that we can project, act upon, and build. The workshop Bodybuilding will propose
collective warm-ups, text materials and physical practices that aim to interrogate the relationship between
choreography and architecture. The aim is to think the architectural event by using the body as a material to
produce a living maquette and finally, to produce a publication that can gather and share our sources.

Choreography of daily life

Supervised by Tristan Chadney and Laurent Esmilaire

Being choreographer is to feel the environment through movements, to spatialise the latent possibilities and
constraints of this environment. Thus, the understanding of the movement becomes the understanding of the
space. The existence of a choreographic space, as an intensified reality, another reality contained in the reality
itself, is based on the duality between an object and its environment. It is this relation that we propose to focus

Copy Cut Paste, From the ‘anti-model’ to the ‘neo-reference’in the suburban decor

Supervised by Martin Migeon and Natalia Petkovae

Copy Cut Paste investigates the use of references in architecture. Generic and seldom looked at elements
from the school’s surroundings will be our objects of study. Through large-scale models, transformed by the
successive gestures of copying-cutting-pasting, we will explore the expressive potential of these‘anti-models’ for
the emergence of a new suburban decor, inhabited by ‘neo-references’.


Protocol 1: Points / Architecture
supervised by Giovanna Silva and Giovanni Piovene

As already developed in Milan in 2021, Giovanna Silva and Giovanni Piovene will ask students to create running
loops of about 12 km connecting the most remarkable buildings of the entire Parisian metropolitan area,
following a map made up of different sources. The list will be eclectic and will include classic and modern
masterpieces from the past, as well as contemporary experiments. As an ideological statement, they will first
cover the periphery and then eventually move towards the city center. If this protocol mainly concerns
exceptional points, it is rather what lies between these points that is most interesting: generic residential blocks,
production sheds, uncrossable roads, underground passages, traces of villages absorbed by the Parisian

Protocole 2 : Geometry
supervised by Pauline Soulenq and Laurent Koetz

Choreography, especially in the Baroque period, was based on geometrical figures defining the movement of
dancers on stage. Thus, at the beginning of the 18th century, several books were published transcribing the
movements created by the ballet master Louis Pécour from figures of learned geometry. In relation with the
theme of choreography, we would like to question the relationship between geometry, spatial figure and body
movement. However, instead of the theatrical stage, we would like to test these movements on the scale of an
urban territory, on routes of several kilometers. Following a random protocol, in the manner of LaTourEx (Laboratory of Experimental Tourism, created in Strasbourg in 1990), we will project these geometrical figures on a map to then discover how to concretely realize our journeys by adapting the abstract layout to the network of streets and paths allowing to move.

The Pinhole workshop

Supervised by miogui architecture composed of Sabine Fremiot and Léo Berastegui

How to transcribe a movement given by the photographic image which, by definition, is frozen? The Pinhole
workshop offers students the opportunity to explore the practice of photography through the pinhole, ancestor of the camera that everyone knows today. To do this, the students will first of all have to understand and create by themselves a pinhole with the material provided. Then, they will develop their own shots with this new
constituted object, thus questioning the movement around the general theme of the choreography.

Dance and space: the party venues

Supervised by Gauthier Burette, Margot Leroux and Francesca Tedesco

There are several types of dances: dance as an artistic practice and dance as a social practice, preferred on the
dancefloor of a club, a rave or a party in apartment. Unlike a show, the party has a primarily social and community function and a specific choreography, socially as well as aesthetically connoted. The experience of the party is made possible by certain spatial qualities. The techno rave, for example, often takes place in decaying industries on the urban periphery. In light of this intimate relationship between dance and space, which condenses the relationships between the individual and the group on the one hand, and between the individual (and the group) and the music on the other, how can we think of a party space that responds to contemporary desires and needs, given the challenges of current urban territories?

Radio Cluster

Supervised by Guillaume Grall and Manon Bruet

Radio Cluster is a radio station broadcast live, throughout the week of the intensive workshop, within the school itself. The editorial line, the contents, the musical and sound programming and the animation are provided by the students themselves in interaction with the school and the participants of the other workshops. Radio Cluster is an open space, accessible to all, and some programs will be produced in public.


Supervised by Constant Janner and Meggie Neves

After long difficult months, our school must wake up, come alive and live again. Every nook and cranny, every
space of the school that we practice on a daily basis and that we think we know: are we really looking at them? Do we really listen to them? The workshop will be an opportunity to explore the interactions between physical,
acoustic or light vibrations on matter and space. The objective is to create installations that reveal the full
sound, vibration and mechanical potential of the school of architecture in order to transmute its apparent inertia
into a great choreography. We will base ourselves to do this on the study of kinetic and cymatic arts.

Fortuitous encounters

Supervised by Alice Lapierre, Odilon Ottinger, Marianne Prouvé and Imma Sierra

Chance encounters aims at framing an exercise based on designing the choreography of the chance meeting
between three elements, two objects et an architectural element, assigned according to chance, as beloved by the surrealists. The meeting is broken down in three acts, the before, displacement and final stage. These steps are figured through various methods of fixed representation but they aim at expressing the movement.

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