August 27, 2020 - Royal College of Art - High Holdings
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e-flux Architecture
August 27, 2020
August 27, 2020

Royal College of Art

Courtesy High Holdings.

The Online Mirror of High Holdings. Courtesy High Holdings.

The Trades of High Holdings. Courtesy High Holdings.

High Holdings
An Online Mirror

ho.ldin.gs
Instagram / Instagram

High Holdings, a mock organisation set up to explore our “sensibilities to discern within massive change,” has launched its online mirror that takes stock of its texts and “trades.” First convened by Valle Medina and Benjamin Reynolds of Pa.LaC.E in 2018 within the architecture department at the Royal College of Art, London, High (as in euphoric) Holdings generates and transmits architectural projects, streams of discursion, mattering and events set within annual thematic bounds.

High Holdings rests firmly within the cascade of major revelations in knowledge forged by colossal pools of information and the raw power we possess to process it. Naturally, a major concern of High Holdings is to offer strategies to decipher and react to the gradual and general estrangement of the world around us.

Through: developing new sensibilities to discern great biological and social changes via information mass; enthusiastically participating without comprehending; and, prioritising the sovereignty of the architectural idea, High Holdings addresses unfolding depictions of the world that may appear unrecognizable but are simply products of terrestrial occupation.

Currents
To date, several annual thematic bounds—or "Currents"—have been explored. Sight/Seeing (2020) put the image on trial, dissecting the triumph of the image as the prevailing medium of communication in architecture. It also addressed the emerging perfection-exhaustion complex; what repulses us; the fact that images can no longer measure science; and, how the architectural rendering has become indistinguishable from visual ad-copy. CHRONOCOPIA (2019), or the abundance of time, leveraged the way we have always understood change—the world-making act of characterizing time—to trigger how we can personalize the patterns of our civilizational histories to act out new scenarios.

Contributions
In dialogue with the yearly Currents, High Holdings has exclusively commissioned and republished works by acclaimed writers and artists such as Karen Barad, Boris Groys, Bill Viola and others, including a faithful reproduction of Robert Smithson's iconic 1966 article “Quasi-Infinities and the Waning of Space.” Works by former participants Praveen Paranagamage, Thomas Jenkins and Léa Allexandre D'Albronn also premiere in this edition.

Trades
The “trades” of High Holdings are architectural projects. This year's projects under Sight/Seeing were completed by Lara Bryan, Kane Carroll, Anyu Chan, Emily Victoria Dawson, Kate Frew, Farid Karim, Jamie Kuehn, Guy Mills, Raluca Moldoveanu, Dominic Oliver, Divya Patel, Frederick Sheppard and Melissa Wear.

High Holdings' Future
The future of High Holdings is to continue to foster radical exchanges between established voices and emerging ones. And with a spirit of extreme mobility, High Holdings is seeking to evolve within unique contexts found in academies, neighborhoods, collections, individual minds, galleries, poetry clubs and so on, to turn unknowns of contemporary culture into tangible works.

Bound together under the logic of a holding company, the "holdings" model was adopted as a market innuendo to counteract the gradual eclipse of genuine experimentation and risk-taking, making way for the ultimate measurability and performativity of learning populations. So the projects within High Holdings willingingly concede to the alluring aspects of the marketplace (eg. its relentlessness and capacity for perpetual revolution) but are concerned only with acculturating everything but business, that is to say sensibilities, deep elaboration in thought, slow becoming, de-automatism and so on.

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