Foreword: Creating of our times

We are proud to present the autumn 2020 edition of AHO WORKS, this time in a digital version. Last year – and also this spring – the pandemic affected virtually every part of society, including the ways of teaching and studying at universities and schools of architecture.  Studying architecture is generally laborious, sometimes extremely entertaining and stimulating, sometimes rather painful. Most of us need to meet people, get feedback and participate in informal settings in order to create a project, or for some of us – even to produce a single drawing or a short text.  When the pandemic during last autumn caused even stronger restrictions resulting in an isolating home office existence for every student, hardly any relationships to co-students, teachers, workshops or to the campus was possible outside the computer screen. We experienced new possibilities, released potentials and learned a lot from digital teaching and zooming. However, this was a completely new situation one could fear might cause weak projects and the end of creativity.

The distress proved mostly unfounded. Looking at the second digital web version of the exhibition AHO WORKS and the projects developed and produced by AHO´s students and diploma candidates throughout the 2020 autumn semester, both creativity and quality seem to have survived. The exhibition shows a wide range of themes and topics, formats and genres, investigations and problem solving, design and evaluation, unfold in compelling presentations, giving a glimpse into a vivid, energetic world of creativity. Some students even seem to have benefitted from the relative isolation, being able to dive into depths, and developing highly original projects. Although a lack of a commenting and discursive open community is sometimes traceable, we are delighted to note that many projects deal with the current societal challenges and our new reality. The collective exhibition AHO WORKS, representing every master course throughout autumn 2020, can thus to be said to be situated very much in our time.

I would like to thank every student and teacher for their contribution.  Special thanks to Aleksandra Ognjanov, Giacomo Pelizzari and Hanna Birkeland Bergh from the Institute of Architecture, and to Jeppe Sophus Lai from the department of Communication, for having produced AHO´s second digital AHO WORKS. It works!  Congratulations to all, we are looking forward to celebrate you and the projects in even better ways when the world recovers.

Oslo, 18.01.2021

Professor Nina Berre

Head of Institute of Form, Theory and History The Oslo School of Architecture and Design