Guy Lafranchi


My alter ego, the Architect “Urbanomad”, lands in places like Taiwan, South Africa and the United States. His line of flight is neither planned nor consistent. Strangely, the parachute simulator in New York transfers him to Taiwan where, through the field of meditation, he suddenly finds himself in South Africa. Exhausted from all the impressions and a tough football game with a bunch of kids, he falls asleep next to the water tank of the football facility. When he wakes up, the Urbanomad finds himself on the rooftop of a building in Chicago, next to a water tank….

Moments occur where he asks himself why he hangs on to this method of traveling. Is it the confrontation with the “non-usual“ field of architecture that creates multidimensional links between the environment, social systems and people? Is it an escape from something? Or is it something more real than the so-called “real”, an acceptance that multiple realities require multiple identities? Why does he not follow a more regular life? Could he give up following a nonlinear path and the movement dictated by the moment and the imagination? Why is he attracted by a curious ambiguity of perception? Is it because he always takes into account that, within the urban matrix, conditions are not always predictable? How is it that the places he visits give him the impression that he was there before? Is this the result of seeds he has already sown?

Diversity of perception and confrontation with new architectural configurations keeps him moving in both, the analog and virtual world. Although he is passing by, he always returns. Although the places have very little in common, a connection is created by the feedback of experience, in which one does not exist without the other. The Urbanomad lives imagination, it is his reality.

Guy Lafranchi is the Founder of GLAD Ltd. (Guy Lafranchi Applied Design), an internationally active architecture and design studio based in Bern, Switzerland, Director of (Research Institute for Experimental Architecture) in Bern, Professor of Architecture at the University of Applied Sciences in Bern, specializing in design and innovation processes. His is a design consulting platform for planning, architecture and design processes as well as design communication.

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