Rolf
Hughes

Director, Experimental Architecture Group

**Abstract

Title: Brick Dialogues**

Following on from the technical and material conditions raised by the ‘living brick’, Brick Dialogues embodies the quality of experience that exists when the fundamental assumptions between human and nature are disrupted. Presenting a series of spoken exchanges between a living brick and a human, the negotiations that take place between a ‘living’ elemental module of architectural construction and its inhabitants is presented. The dialogues address the theme of adaptation directly: to the use of resources within the units that produce ‘living’ systems (light, water, energy etc.), movement, their structural constraints (walls, geometry, matter), the processes taking place within this site (equilibrium/disequilibrium, conflict, struggle, and transformation), and, how they relate to their living communities and each other. This is captured through prose poetry and sound recordings that postulate potential ‘dialogues’ between humans and nonhumans. The recordings are produced through the principles of composting in both a literary and material sense, where the human voice is subjected to transformation through its relationship with bacteria and worms. In this way, it escapes semantic orthodoxy and comes closer to the micro-transformations of the composting process. The ‘speakers’ within the dialogues utter irreconcilable languages and yet this co-existence, this tolerance of difference, itself becomes a resolution of suspended tension.

Bio

Rolf Hughes' fiction has been published by Faber & Faber and broadcast on BBC Radio. His prose poems have been published in The Prose Poem, Sentence(for a special feature on the prose poem in Great Britain, guest edited by Nicki Santili), Quarter after Eight, Double Room, 100 Words(which he co-founded during a residency on the University of Iowa's International Writing Program), the essay and poetry collections Handbook of the Unknowable, Space Arkand elsewhere. He has acted and directed theatre and been employed as a dramaturge for The Great Escape Theatre Company. He holds a First Class degree in English and Related Literature (University of York), an MA in Creative Writing (with Distinction), the first ever Ph.D. in Creative and Critical Writing funded by the British Academy from the internationally renowned creative writing programme at the University of East Anglia, UK, and an International Writing Fellowship from the University of Iowa (USA).

Rolf was inaugural Director of Research as well as Professor of Artistic Research at Stockholm University of the Arts. He was elected Vice President of the international Society for Artistic Research. A transdisciplinary practitionerand co-founder of Radical Circus, he has published extensively on artistic, design-led and practice-based research.

Rolf is currently Director of Artistic Research and Experience Design for the Experimental Architecture Group (EAG), with Rachel Armstrong at Newcastle University, UK. Since 2016, the transdisciplinary work of EAG has been exhibited, published and performed at the Venice Art and Architecture Biennales, the Tallinn Architecture Biennale, the Trondheim Art Biennale, Uppsala Konsert & Kongress, Allenheads Contemporary Arts, Culture Lab, the Palais de Tokyo (Paris) and the University of the Underground (Amsterdam).