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Tijana Stevanovic

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POSTDOC

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OSQUARS BACKE 5

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About me

My work is situated at the intersection of architectural history, critical theory, and cultural studies, focusing on questions of labor, technology, subjectivity, and knowledge production. My PhD thesis 'Incorporating Self-management: Architectural Production in New Belgrade' (Newcastle University, 2019) explored the ways in which the constitutionally established workers' self-management in post-war Yugoslavia influenced the organization of architectural techniques. I argue that self-management was constituted by three intertwined concerns: a revolutionary notion, a concrete social policy engaging Yugoslav workers in governing processes, and an everyday architectural practice in designing/constructing New Belgrade. By analyzing a range of sources - technical and legal documents, educational literature, personal inheritance, oral history - the thesis' focus on material conditions of architectural production over the four decades of socialism elucidated for the first time in detail how self-management's contradictions significantly played out in social relations and the everyday realm of architects' work. This research is the basis for a book project currently in preparation. Examples of my recent publications engaging with the related themes are: 'Postmodernism Unfinished: Forging the Humanist Subject in New Belgrade' (in Architecture in Effect, 2019 ); 'Overpainting that Jostles' ( with Sophie Read, in  Architecture and Feminisms, 2018); 'Tools for conviviality: architects and the limits of flexibility for housing design in New Belgrade' (in  Industries of Architecture, 2016 ), etc.

At KTH Architecture as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, I am currently conducting my project 'Normalizing Flexibility: Technologies of Governmentality in Processes of Architectural Production'. It researches the rise of the imperative of flexibility in post-war architectural culture, regarded as both a norm and a pragmatist solution to the post-'68 demands for more individual autonomy. Focusing on labor in architectural production, and processes rather than its products — the project engages with institutional instruments, imaginations of bodies, principles in education and training, and collaboration models which have underpinned the paradigm of flexibility in the post-war praxis of architectural production. I recently organised the session 'Flexibility and its Discontents: Techniques and Technologies in Twentieth Century Architecture' at the EAHN 2021 conference, with eight paper contributions. An edited publication is currently being prepared out of the material presented here. 

I am currently an Affiliate Researcher to the project funded by AHRC (UK) and FAPESP (Brazil)  'Translating Ferro / Transforming Knowledges of Architecture, Design and Labor for the New Field of Production Studies [TF / TK]', 2020-2024. I am also a Lecturer at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London, (2015—) teaching architectural history and theory in MArch and BA courses.

My research practice has evolved in dialogue with interdisciplinary and art collaborations, which resulted in international exhibitions, artist's books, and residencies. Examples include the projects: on growing exhaustion in art-production, illness, and self-care, with The Feminist Healthcare Research Group, exhibited as  Sick Leave  at District, Berlin, 2016, with the publication  'Political Feelings'; on autobiographical testimony's claim to authenticity:  'A Partial Index'  (with Peter Merrington, artist's book and exhibition at Baltic 39, Newcastle, 2014); on resistance and critique of individual authorship in architecture:  'I am too sad to dissent'  (as an artist in residence in  Flutgraben, Berlin: Watchtower Schlesischer Busch, 2013), on the memorialization of socialist struggles as the site of personal trauma in '(small memorials)', 2013-2015. 

Out of the work on the international PhD course 'Approaching Research Practice in Architecture' 2020/2021, together with Dr Meike Schalk (KTH), Dr Torsten Lange (TUM), and Prof Andreas Putz (TUM) I am currently co-editing the forthcoming special issue 'Species of Theses' (2022) of the journal Dimensions. Journal of Architectural Knowledge.


Courses

Scientific Theory and Research Methodology in Architecture (F1A5035), teacher | Course web