Starting from n° 1 – 2007, the quarterly magazine the Carrè Bleu
– a paper of theory aimed at stimulating analysis and debate,
with strong roots in the practice of project and construction –
will be formed:
In three languages and in colour,
it collects theoretical analyses on a single key word from
several standpoints. The objective is strengthening the analysis
on the principles underlying the organization of life spaces.
No term, in itself, can include
a line of reasoning, but it can at least conjure it up:
symbiosis, hybridization, simultaneity, mutation … summarize
some objectives of our present time, evoking images opposed to
those dominating in present actions; the same is true for
couples of opposed words: monads/ fragments, or for positive
coexistence of antonyms: unity/diversity, dispersion/
concentration, global/ local, mobility/ immobility, conservation/
innovation, rational/ irrational, material/ immaterial…...
B. enclosed folder
devoted to a work or to an architects’ firm chosen by the
Editing Committee in an individual region for each issue (Central
Europe, Northern Europe, Mediterranean Countries or other
back, current events (books, exhibitions, etc.); themes of
international debate, open forum.
is flanked by a series of thematic monograph
introduced by "Mémoire en
Report of meeting of January, 14th 2006 at
other will follow "Sintassi urbane"
"Différence / Différer / Différance"
"Appel international à idées - une idée pour chaque ville"
"Morphogenetic and performative design"
"Assonanze / Dissonanze"
"Sustainability / Architecture"
On the web site
www.carrebleu.eu a digital interactive edition of the first two
documents will be available.
a new feature: “First Work Award”, will be on line
meetings of the Editing Committee will take place in Paris or in other cities, planned on the
model of “the Architect and the Power”, on the theme of the
following issue, with on line contributions from those who
cannot attend the meeting.
specific features of the Carrè Bleu have to be emphasized
(from Philippe Fouquey’s paper, February 27th,
2006 at the Finnish Institute in Paris):
The Carré Bleu, international review (or paper ?):
a. Un postulate.
The size of the review allows for personal connections between
its members from different countries. They have the same
background (architectural and environmental in a broad sense).
They met because they have similar visions and similar
curiosities. Their questions have the same nature.
b. An extraordinary experience
Their questions ? Some French members of the Carrè Bleu,
irritated by the disturbing abnormalities of operational
practice in architecture and construction in France, have
realized, through a series of meetings with the other members of
the Carrè Bleu, that these abnormalities appear also in other
Countries (particularly in European Countries).
They have then decided to
organize some seminars on the theme “ the Architect and the
Power” (see Carré Bleu 1.96). The seminars - housed by the
Finnish Institute in Paris (directed by Tarmo Kunnas) – were
attended by members of the Carrè Bleu coming from 14 different
Trying to make a
comparison of similar abnormalities in the different realities,
we reckoned that the deep differences of operational modalities
from one Country to another made it often impossible the
comparison itself. The practices in the different Countries were
separated by chasms. National idiosyncrasies hindered serene
A great effort was
necessary to understand inequalities and understanding an
inequality became for each of us a discovery, a victory, a
It is therefore necessary to realise that from what it is better
to call confrontations rather than comparisons, unexpected views
and ideas crop up, which can even suggest changes to the present
situation (confrontations between theories ought to be made as
well). As a consequence, the international nature and structure
of our group contains the embryo of an organization authorizing
research on the different themes which we consider of vital
No big magazine is
endowed with the means to stress abnormalities: they show,
better or worse, and at length, what does exist, without feeling
any need to question it.
The size of our magazine, our own interpersonal relations, our
shared worries, make it possible to implement the process we
have outlined since the beginning. This process and even more a
strong common will, supported by shared principles, give us the
strength (the rage…) to face what we consider unbearable.
The Carré Bleu, Observatoire International de l'Architecture
We founded, many years ago, an
Association with this name. I recall that we intend to reserve
to the Carrè Bleu the role of theoretical analysis, and that we
feel the need for a large scale observation of realizations,
theories and ways of working, together with an ability to
intervene: “analysis and detachment, but at the same time stance
and immediate response to what happens” read the “Terms for
transmission of the Carrè Bleu…”.
Nowadays the Carrè Bleu
can and must play three roles:
1 - as an organ of critical observation
2 - as a careful organ of analysis
3 - as an “armed wing"
The already mentioned
international confrontations imply a heavy and difficult
research work, they cannot be restricted in time:
You might imagine, for instance, a work of comparative analysis
of the teaching systems in the different countries. This asks
for immersing oneself in national problems in their economic,
sociological, historic, etc. aspects; in problems of
relationships between architects and engineers (and their
training) and in many other aspects.
Knowing the state of the art in
teaching in the different countries is the first step.
Confrontation, rich in surprises first, in proposals later, is
the second step, the one to be attained.
During this time, daily
life goes on, with its successful results, its stops, its
abnormalities, its injustices, its rhythm: the Carrè Bleu must
be prepared to observe events, their evolution, to take stances,
to intervene as soon as possible…
It is the role of
“Observatoire International de l'Architecture” that the Carré
Bleu must take hold of: it will enable it to be present on the
fronts it has chosen. The Internet can play a fundamental role
as to immediate intervention and diversified contacts. The
international structure of the Carré Bleu must, this time, help
our reactions not to be restricted within national boundaries,
it must facilitate frequent, informal and personal exchanges, so
that, for instance, a stance at a national level takes into
account the situation in other countries, or deliberately and
consciously decides not to take it into account.
The free spirit of the Carré Bleu, source of discoveries.
documents of one of our meetings, the one on March, 4th 2005,
one could read:
"We said that it is necessary to let the reflex, or the habit,
of the members of our group appear in their launching themselves
in attempts, in exploring the ordinary analysis from new and
unusual viewpoints, in venturing in premonitory assessments, in
examining unusual parameters as traditional parameters.
The manifesto issue ought to be depositary of a different idea,
that we evoked: we should appear as the ones we are for what we
are. i.e. in the spirit of those who, whether architects or not,
are able to form, in time, groups of people curious by nature,
including necessarily heterogeneous or different personalities,
who are all really tormented by the need to elude “received
ideas” and by the need to distance themselves, in our field, in
connection with a clear intellectual conscience.
Whatever the indicators characterising these people (even small
size realisations, speeches, articles, etc….) and at any point
in the planet.".
For the Carrè Bleu
not to be a review happy with taking note of what happens, but
able to critically, creatively and dynamically observing, it
should be hopefully be driven by “rare birds”
- rid of architectural and environmental opportunities
- attracted by a paradoxical approach, free of problems
- attracted by what the unexpected does not strike (serendipity)
In short, we must take
shape as a breeding-ground of curious, non conformist creatures,
capable of mutual exchanges, of forming as a group of free
We must be at the same
time a review and a group, a breeding-ground
which is born - lives - and dies.