Making and thinking about architectures of activism by taking a position and filling a void.

Architectural education and discourse are inextricable from the sociopolitical. Institutional critique is taking new forms and necessitating new paradigms. This course aims to leverage collective and DIY knowledge building as a representational technique and a tool of power. Architects and contributors to the built environment must challenge hierarchical structures, the canonization of the discipline, and the efficacy of architectural institutions. Emergent networks allow participants to evaluate and retool their own education and environment.

GSAPP @ Columbia University 2021, Visual Studies Seminar taught by Lexi Tsien & Jelisa Blumberg


The Protest Handbook: A Historical Taxonomy
by Emily Ruopp

My Power Tool is a Protest Handbook that is a taxonomy that catalogs forms of activism throughout history and the tools they used to resist. The book sets out to understand how protest tools are being used and for whom do they support. Through cataloging forms of activism and protest tools, it becomes clear how objects can be reclaimed to support their cause. Then a distinction between charities and mutual aid groups is made in order to expose how charities participate in corruption and a false separation of politics and injustice. Instead, a mutual aid network is preferred because they are more active and capable of providing relief to the most vulnerable populations.

The Index analyzes the protests in different ways to not only make it easier to navigate the various calculations, like # of protests, # of people killed, injured, and arrested during protests, but also start to draw conclusions between them. Also, a series of sequels or additions are included to show the types of protests to add if I have another semester to continue the project.

The Conversation Cookbook
by Jordan Readyhough

The conversation cook book looks at the way we gather around food and how those gatherings provide opportunities for different conversations and social interactions.


Visual Studies Seminar, GSAPP @ Columbia University Spring 2021 – taught by Lexi Tsien & Jelisa Blumberg – work by Erin Biediger, Matthew Brubaker, Ying Cheng, Mark-Henry Decrausaz, Cameron Fullmer, Gene Han, Jean Kim, Maxim Kolbowski-Frampton, Jacob Li, Urechi Oguguo, Keneilwe Ramaphosa, Jordan Readyhough, Emily Ruopp, Hannah Stollery & Sarah Zamler.