The starting point for the Bauhaus Lab 2020 is a block of sulfur concrete that was used in experimental lowcost housing in 1972. The block is part of the archive of the Minimum Cost Housing Group at the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal. Rallying around the question “How the other half builds,” the group began to investigate living and building in developing countries at McGill University in Montreal in the 1970s. Their research and projects, including experiments with sulphur concrete, contributed to an international shift within discussions of housing shortages in the “Third World.” Up until that point, slum evictions and resettlement projects had followed the functionalist logic of the Western construction industry, which led to the destruction of existing community structures and living practices. The group’s criticism sparked new interest in informal and traditional building practices.
The international participants of the Bauhaus Lab will examine documents and materials from the collection of the archive – along with the archival methods themselves. The research results will be shown in an exhibition created by the participants at the Bauhaus Building.