Affect, Architecture, and Practice : Toward a Disruptive Temporality of Practice book cover
1st Edition

Affect, Architecture, and Practice
Toward a Disruptive Temporality of Practice

ISBN 9781138487505
Published May 18, 2021 by Routledge
210 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Affect, Architecture, and Practice builds on and contributes to work in theories of affect that have risen within diverse disciplines, including geography, cultural studies, and media studies, challenging the nature of textual and representational-based research. Although numerous studies have examined how affect emerges in architectural spaces, little attention has been paid to the creative process of architectural design and the role that affect plays in the many contingencies and uncertainties that arise in the process.

The book traces the critical, philosophic, and architectural theories to examine how affect, architecture, and practice are interlinked. Through a series of conversations and reflections, it examines three key contemporary architects, their practices and projects, all within a single coherent theme. Reiser + Umemoto (RUR Architecture DPC), USA, Kerstin Thompson Architects, Australia, and Shigeru Ban Architects, Japan, are critically studied through the lens of different aspects of practice, namely image-making, the design process, and the making of an everyday object/material.

Through this investigation, author Akari Nakai Kidd demonstrates how affect theory allows a critical interrogation of the in-betweens of practice, its liminality and limits. It questions the stability of objects, the smooth temporality of practice, and its often under-conceptualised non-human dimensions. More significantly, the book demonstrates architectural practice’s contribution to the reconceptualisation of theories of affect.

Table of Contents


Affect, Architecture and Practice


Space of Affect


Time of Affect


Reiser + Umemoto, RUR Architecture DPC: Kaohsiung Port Terminal


Kerstin Thompson Architects: Monash University Museum of Art


Shigeru Ban Architects: Christchurch Transitional Cardboard Cathedral


Conclusion: Life of Architecture and Afterlife of Affects


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Akari Nakai Kidd is an academic and scholar in architectural design and architectural theory and criticism at Deakin University, Australia. Her work is interdisciplinary and crosses the fields of architecture, critical theory, and philosophy. Her current research explores the in-betweens of architectural practice, specifically the creative processes of design through the lens of affect theory. She seeks to use affect as a theoretical tool to interrogate the stability of objects, the smooth temporality of practice, and its often under-conceptualised post- or non-human dimensions.


"Nakai Kidd’s book is a major extension of theories of affect into the field of architecture. Through a theoretical engagement with the likes of Spinoza, Nietzsche, and Deleuze, and an analysis of projects by Reiser + Umemoto, RUR, Kerstin Thompson Architects, and Shigeru Ban Architects, she provides a detailed and nuanced account of this emerging area of architectural theory. At once provocative and accessible, Affect, Architecture, and Practice is highly recommended."

Professor Iain Borden, Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London

"The question of 'affect' has, in a moment preoccupied with ecological issues, taken a second place to technological concerns of energy and efficiency. And yet a comprehensive understanding of the relations among subjects and their environments, the special psychic conditions of their inhabitation, technological and spatial, remains essential to any comprehensive vision of the post-Anthropocene world. Akari Nakai Kidd has provided us with a guidebook to this new universe, one that leads us through the theoretical and analytical conditions that surround our fundamental question: how to design for human subjects in a world formed of those potentially dangerous objects that, posing as 'architecture', invade and consume, if not ignore the bodily, sensual, and psychological demands of the subjects that inhabit them."

Professor Anthony Vidler, Professor of Architecture, Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture, The Cooper Union; Visiting Professor of Architecture, Princeton University