Before he got busy being one of the best architects in Australia, Andrew Maynard would do wonderful polemics, thought exercises, and just fun stuff that displayed his imagination and humour. Now he is at it again, imagining a new Parliament Building that responds to the people, that he calls Mob-ile Parliament.
A mobile, adaptable architecture is a democratic architecture. Democracy is a weird creature. An illusion of choice. An illusion that those in power are truly answerable to the masses. Many of the spaces that elected representatives occupy are heavily controlled, fortified and spatially manipulated to the benefit of the representative rather than those represented. The disenfranchised, those left out, those left behind, those completely disempowered have only one way to make themselves heard; forced to embrace mobility and guerrilla style hit-and-run tactics. The letter to the editor can be ignored. The push, or the shove, cannot.
First of all, Andrew thinks that politicians shouldn't be able to sneak in the back door, but should run the gauntlet of their constituents. He even makes the walk to the building meander a bit to make it longer.
Then, depending on what people think about how the politicians are doing, the public can open shutters on the outside letting light into Parliament when they are good and close them off when they are bad.
What if parliament could be manipulated by the masses? What if parliament's spatial condition is changeable by those that are dissatisfied and marginalised as well as those that are pleased with the contributions of elected representatives? The abrupt, confrontational nature of direct physical interaction is what drives the Mobile Parliament. Though safe within, the politician’s access to view and light can be democratically controlled by the public.
Another provocative idea from Andrew Maynard.
More Maynard Ideas:
Andrew Maynard's Corb 2.0: Archigram Reborn
Poop House by Andrew Maynard
BOB Gets Around: Andrew Maynard's Mobile Home
Andrew Maynard's Airdrop House: Just Add Water
Andrew Maynard's Suburb-Eating Robots
Andrew Maynard on Sustainable Design and Teen Sex