The Non Architecture Competitions, a non-profit organisation with only purpose to encourage and support the creation of brave innovative ideas, is accepting entries in their 9th edition, this time themed "Buying", aimed to develop design proposals for the shop typology, intended as a space – either material or immaterial – where goods or services are available to the public.
We can consider “Architecture” everything that has already been designed and/or built. That would define a realm of conventional solutions, often repeated in a self-referential system. We imagined a counterpart, a “Non architecture”. A world of unexplored designs and countless possibilities, that if found, could enlarge and change the boundaries of Architecture permanently. A universe of chances and opportunities never challenged by architects before. A limitless field of investigation that includes everything that is not Architecture, yet.
Non Architecture Competitions is an initiative pointed at finding and bringing forward these valuable alternative proposals. It practically consists in a series of nine competitions, organized in a time frame of three years. All competitions have their focus on finding innovative approaches to a specific architecture topic, always related to a functional issue. Emphasis is always pointed to non-traditional, and therefore non-architectural approaches to the architect’s work.
The aim of the “Buying” competition is to develop design proposals for the shop typology, intended as a space – either material or immaterial – where goods or services are available to the public.
The participants are asked to create innovative and unconventional projects on this theme, questioning the very basis of the notion of the shop. In recent years, a series of new initiatives have emerged in relation to the shopping experience.
Take for example IKEA’s app that lets users see products in their own space before purchasing them, by integrating ar technology; or ASOS mobile app, where users upload photos of looks they like and receive suggestions for a selection of similar styles to buy instantly. Even grocery shopping has become effortless with home delivery, and actually, one of the biggest supermarkets in Britain has developed an app, through which shoppers can have up to 20 items delivered to their door within an hour.
Fueled by technology shopping has evolved in unanticipated ways, with the biggest trend across all sectors, the fragmentation of the buying journey. This means that digital and physical are constantly interconnected providing the customers with the maximum of information prior to purchase, which in turn renders them a lot more powerful in making their own purchasing decisions.
Besides the technological conveniences, more and more brands find ways to enhance the shopping experience in their physical stores, aiming to obtain value beyond their commercial use, like London’s House of vans, which opened a custom BMX and skatepark in the bottom of its flagship store, or Nordstrom local, the innovative “service hub” the fashion brand has launched in the US, that has no inventory, but a pick-up service, tailors, personal stylists, a shoe-repair shop, a barber and other services.
Within this context, with critical thinking and creative attitude, the participants are urged to investigate how the shopping experience can be reformed in the future, and respectively, how the concept of the shop as a space with material and immaterial characteristics can be reinvented. Designers are asked to create an artifact, merging considerable programmatic innovation and valuable design tools. The proposal can be a device, a piece of furniture, an interior design project, a pavilion, a building or an urban plan.
Scale of intervention, program dimensions and location are not given, and they can be arranged by the participants to better suit their project. Projects can be developed in abstract locations as well as specific places, and they can go from the scale of interior design to urban strategies. Just remember that every proposal should be focused on a very specific condition, showing one simple concept, clearly communicated and fully developed.
The participants are asked to submit one ZIP folder:
• Presentation image, showing the qualities of your design, in one catchy and representative impression.
• Technical image, showing in a 2d drawing a specific technical/organizational aspect of the project.
• Functional image, showing a specific functional peculiar aspect of the project.
• Text document that clearly states the title and subtitle (maximum of 10 words), 5 #hastags (providing a quick overview and explanation of the project), followed by a short description (maximum of 200 words). The text must be written in English.
• Text document with the team’s info
All the images must be A4, 300 dpi, portrait (vertical). It is highly recommend you do not add texts to the images, and leave the text document for further explanations. Try to convey in each file one specific idea in one simple image. Each one image shows one single content, So for every image you can include just one single visualization (ex. one drawing or one rendering). The images do not demand for any kind of specific technique of representation. They can be technical drawings, diagrams, collages, pictures, renders, models, paintings, hand drawings, etc. The projects should be explanatory enough through the graphic material.
Teams can be formed by a maximum number of 5 people.
Non architecture competitions wants to be unconventional also in the way it rewards its participants. The winners will be in fact three, all equally important. In addition 9 honourable mentions will be awarded. Each one of the 3 jury members will select 1 winner and 4 honourable mentions.
Winners will be announced between 21-26 May 2019.
Entry Fees are:
• 30 Euro — 1–15 February 2019 – Special Registration
• 45 Euro — 15 March 2019 – Early Registration
• 60 Euro — 15 April 2019 – Regular Registration
• 75 Euro — 16–27 April 2019 – Late Registration
Who can participate? ⇣
The Non Architecture Competitions 2019 are open to all human beings, from every age and cultural background, working in groups or individually.
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