[with Brunna Wopereis and Mariana Medeiros Penna]
The Pilotis is an ambiguous space. It is a horizontal shelter made of abstract menhirs: a laic temple of contemplation of the world. It is the permeable passage which invites the meeting, the memory of the square or of the colonnade surrounding the agora. It is the public in the private and the private over the public at the same time: it is conflict. Because of its ambiguity, the Pilotis allows endless possibilities of usages and appropriations which overlap and cancel on each other, eventually leading to complete uncertainty, the disuse: where everything can be, nothing happens.
The current ground level of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro Head Office is flat. It is the podium on which the monument-building departs from topographic reality of the world to arise in the abstract field of the mathematical universe. The ground floor of the Head Office represents the context of Rio de Janeiro in two dimensions. It only represents.
Why not subvert the abstract condition of the ground level of the pilotis into “real” topography? This topography that allows Greek theaters, that converges flows, this one which identifies and distinguishes the landscape. We act at the Pilotis through two different issues or positions. First, to solve particular practical problems of this Pilotis, i.e., understanding its flows, demands and current appropriations. The second position relates to the Pilots as “an architecture theme”, as a “generic” Pilotis. On this second Pilotis, we act more critically, with a proposal that is not contrary to its ambiguous status: it only organizes the different appropriation, offering them a place to happen.
A wrong shape. Crooked. Inexplicable. Naughty. Immoral. Idiot. An improper action. Expressionist paranoia at the entrance of the palace of abstract reason, as if to remember that the crazy city is made of snack bars and newsstands: “parangolés” that dress the rational man with dirt of the street, which is the dirt of life. And they enter! Their feet filth with clay of arena theatre; their hands tarnished with the black paint from realistic poems; and their mouths stained with fertile crumbs of bar conversation.