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Joana Rafael (b.1979) is an architect, researcher and lecturer currently based in Porto, Portugal, working between architecture, (issues of) ecology and visual culture. She holds a PhD (2017) in Visual Cultures and an MRes (2009) in Research Architecture from Goldsmiths, University of London, an MA (2008) from the Metropolis Graduate Programme in Architecture and Urban Culture, run by the Centre for Contemporary Culture, Barcelona and a degree (2002) in Architecture from the University of Minho, Guimarães. Joana is a member of ID+ (Research Institute for Design, Media and Culture), NIAM (Nucleus of Research in Arts and Multimedia) and CEGOT (Center for Studies in Geography and Spatial Planning). Joana also possesses a Certificate of Sustainable Agriculture and Biological Farming Practice, from Espaço Virtual, Porto, Portugal.

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Mutually Assured Survival and the Reserves of Future Catastrophe

Hosted by The Barber Shop Summer School, Lisbon, Portugal

This conference paper examines reserve realities of the nuclear and their proliferation in an ever more extensive network, that envelops other activities and extends towards a permanent, unified and world-scale techno-sphere. These nuclear reserves will be explored in relation to an eschatological economy of salvation that governs attempts to predict, contain and even eradicate the risk of a catastrophic crisis, and the great socio-political, technocratic and cultural frameworks built around this. A specific focus will fall on how their architecture is developed in relation to the governance of risk, being defined by constraints that aim to manage the future and fix natural and historical time, drawing a horizon line that encloses and protects spatial and temporal integrity in order to prevent any contamination that threatens it. The talk will examine how these architectural measures attempt to construct a temenos, an autonomous world, set apart and held in forced stasis deemed to fail.


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