automated landscapes

Nieuwe Instituut, in collaboration with TU Delft and other partners.
Co-principal researcher (2016-2018)

Core research team: Merve Bedir, Ludo Groen, Marten Kuijpers, Víctor Muñoz Sanz, Marina Otero Verzier.

Automated Landscapes emerged out of the alignment between the ongoing commitment of Het Nieuwe Instituut to address the implications of automation and artificial intelligence for architecture, design and digital culture, and 'Lights Out!: Emerging Spaces and Territories of Non-Human Labour', my proposal for research on the production of space for and by fully automated industry, which in 2016 received an honourable mention in Het Nieuwe Instituut’s 2016 International Call for Fellows.

Under the premise that automation disrupts not only labour markets, but the configuration,design and occupation of entire territories, ‘Automated Landscapes’ seeked to document and reflect upon the emerging architectures and urbanisms of fully-automated labour, looking at other actors involved in the production of spaces that remain beyond classic notions of authorship and signature.

The aims of the project were manifold, namely: to shed light on the impact of automation in various geographies and scales; to examine how the design of automated spaces challenges conventional spatial requirements and normative rules in architecture for health, safety and welfare, such as standards for light, ventilation, height, and floor areas; to reveal how these technologies bring new forms of territorial occupation, segregation and contestation; and to speculate upon the role of architects and designers in imagining and intervening in territories and spaces for non-humans.

I have been invited to write essays and present internationally on this project. I have presented outcomes of this project, (in collaboration with Marten Kuijpers) as research installations: #OFFICE, at the Dutch contribution to the Venice Architecture Biennale 2018, and Port at the 2017 Vienna Biennale

Out of a collaboration with the European Post-Master of Urbanism (EMU) of TU Delft, I co-curated a Countryside Tour with students and a diverse group of experts and cultural producers. 

Related publications:

Bedir, M., Groen, L., Kuijpers, M., Muñoz Sanz, V. & Otero Verzier, M., eds. (2023), Automated Landscapes, Rotterdam: Het Nieuwe Instituut.  ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2022), “Five Freedoms, technology and autonomy in animal farming: a report from the Netherlands”, in Monumental Wastelands Magazine 1, issue on ‘Autonomy’. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2020), “Best Supporting Characters,” in: T. Riha et al., eds., Steel Cities: Architecture of Logistics in East Central Europe. Prague, Zurich: VI PER, Park Books, 290-304. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V., Kuijpers, M., Abou Jaoude, G. (2018),“Agricultural Platforms,” in Harvard Design Magazine #46, Winter 2018, pp. 124-31. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2018), “Polanyi in the Garden,” in Más Allá de lo Humano. Lugo: Bartlebooth, pp. 169-79. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2018), “Researching Automated Landscapes”, in: Otero Verzier, M., Axel, N. (eds), WORK BODY LEISURE, Berlin: Hatje Cantz, pp. 103-126. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2017), “Captives in FutureLand”, in Volume #51, November 2017, pp. 38-41. ︎︎︎︎

Muñoz Sanz, V. (2016), “Welcome to FutureLand: Automation Takes Command in the Port of Rotterdam”, in Volume #49, September 2016, pp. 33-38. ︎︎︎︎

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