ASTHAYI SHAALA

the MAKESHIFT SCHOOL

ABOUT THIS PROJECT

The ‘Asthayi Shaala’ or Makeshift School is rooted on a principle of constant transformation and remaking. More than a spatial proposal, this is a temporal one: we propose a device in which resources can be harnessed ad-hoc -that being, spontaneously and with a specific purpose- by those who are producing the space, in order to remodel architectural features.

The outline is simple: providing an easy-to-assemble elemental infrastructure. A set of modules that can be played with and can serve as a platform of communication and exploration of Goan crafts. In that manner, we see crafts in Goa not as a defined, absolute, and tradition-bound set of practices, but rather as an opportunity to reinvent material engagements in different scales and in direct relation to the cultural, social, and economic possibilities of today.

Now, the crafting of this building is set to be a GAME, played by those who use it. A game of assemblage.

We see play not as gratuitous, haphazard, or arbitrary, but as a process of negotiation, communication and interaction: it has rules and guidelines in order to acquire purpose and finality. In that way, we introduce a simple set of initial rules by which occupants can navigate the contingencies of the place and circumstances at hand: a starting set of values to produce spatial arrangements. Therefore, the project does not possess one plan (in the conventional sense) but rather, a set of strategies and possibilities to collectively bring the pieces together. 

Additionally, the proposal’s materiality itself works with the same logic: it is constructed with what is available (contextual contingencies, technological capacities, economic means, etc.) and as a manifestation of the crafting processes that the building houses. In that way, the project becomes an active participant of pedagogical developments while materializing through a direct participation of craftspeople.