Inaugural Lecture - Prof. Sophie Delhay


Event details

Date 05.06.2024
Hour 17:1519:00
Speaker Prof. Sophie Delhay
Category Inaugural lectures - Honorary Lecture
Event Language English
Date: 5 June 2024
Time: 17:15 – 19:00
Introductions by the Dean, lectures by Prof. Sophie Delhay and Prof. Kenan Zhang. Followed by an Apero.
Place: CO2
Zoom link:

Life is freer than plan

Housing design intersects with the spatial, social and environmental dimensions of architecture. My project-based research into housing has taken as its operating concept the composition of plans by rooms, often identical, which goes beyond the functionalist conceptions that contemporary housing is still heir. This enables me to design homes that can cope with social changes in lifestyles in the present, and others in the future that are as still unpredictable.
The functional de-assignment of spaces that I explore leads to the conclusion – a priori counter-intuitive - that the plan grid allows the greatest freedom of use. In particular, it stimulates the imagination of occupants, who can freely choose the location of functions.
such a conceptual framework also emphasizes the specific role of the kitchen. It is not only the place of exchange between inside and outside, once reserved for women, but also the place where the archaic and cultural activity of meal preparation takes place, involving energy resources. This has led me to question this space more specifically. 
It is this research, both historical and prospective, that my presence at the school enables me to share and intensify.

About the speaker
Sophie Delhay graduated from the Lille School of Architecture (FR) in 1999.
Since 2004, she has devoted her practice exclusively to the question of habitat. Her practice is based on project-based research, with experimental schemes designed to destandardize outmoded models - particularly that of the single-family dwelling. The aim is to design housing that is open to new uses and lifestyles, and that can evolve over time to create truly sustainable architecture in the context of the environmental and energy crisis. This aspect is inseparable from a social commitment that leads her to stimulate living together, from the domestic to the urban scale. Her experimental schemes are always validated by a process of surveys with residents, carried out a few years after construction, enabling her to speculate on these exchanges to further anchor her innovations in a principle of reality.
Her work is the subject of academic research, publications and exhibitions, and regularly wins awards. Today, she is a leading voice in the European architectural debate. She was recently awarded the Schelling Prize in recognition of the theoretical importance of her practice.


Practical information

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  • Registration required


  • SAR - Gesualdo Casciana