Portugal, Porto

Practice & Theory of Sustainable and Social Architecture III

when 1 August 2016 - 21 August 2016
language English
duration 3 weeks
fee EUR 1200

In 2015 Critical Concrete was founded with the ambition of promoting a new model: the refurbishment of abandoned places for social housing and cultural initiatives through summer camp programs centered around sustainable architecture and art in context.
In this sense, we want to conceptually reconnect the artist to the amateur and foster the sharing of skills and knowledge between experienced practitioners and surrounding communities, material reuse and sustainable, ecological constructions.

Thus, we aim to generate a cultural and social space in cohesion with a playground for architectural experimentation.

In 2016, Critical Concrete will hold a summer school in Europe > Portugal > Porto, in the neighborhood of Bonfim, in collaboration with the Junta de Freguesia do Bonfim (Porto district municipality), through its new program Habitar. The program Habitar helps to find concrete solutions for the rehabilitation of abandoned spaces to put them back in the social housing circuit.

In the Summer Course, we offer a completely unconventional and cutting edge program. We will work on innovative solutions for social housing, while simultaneously developing new working methods. Both students and young professionals will explore models of cooperative planning in interdisciplinary groups, design and build their projects!


Week 1 - design and first working steps
Week 2/3 - building

The 132 hours course will consist of:

Monday-Tuesday 9am - 4pm
Wednesday 10am - 6pm
Thursday-Friday 9am - 4pm

Monday-Tuesday 5pm - 7pm
Thursday-Friday 5pm - 7pm
First Saturday all day, architectural visit of the city

(Indicative planning, subject to adjustments)

Course leader

We're quite proud of our team. There's no other place you'll know so many great teachers and mentors:

Bellastock, Pedro Cavaco Leitão, Matthias Einhoff (KUNSTrePUBLIK), Saskia Hebert (Subsolar), Patrick Hubmann (ConstructLab), Jan Körbes (REFUNC), Miod

Target group

- Architecture and design professionals, graduates, students and PhD-students, engineers, makers, DIYers, builders, artists in their respective fields.
- People who want to engage with the practice and learn how to build and meet people with inspiring background and know-how.
- People who want to get a first experience in building with a theoretical input, so to start their own projects, with the support of our network.
- In general, all people interested in sustainable construction and social engagement.

Not sure to fit? Get in touch with us!

Course aim

This architecture summer school aims to:
1- Participate in the refurbishment of two houses of social interest (one social housing configuration and a future production space)
2- Collectively design and build. Participatory processes in social architecture
3- Contribute to the neighbourhood's cultural life, by opening our doors for some theoretical courses, evening and screenings
4- Construct the basis for a new production space in Porto, playing with popular formats.
5- Development of high quality furnitures and architecture with a small budget and restricted time.
6- Offer the students a new language of skills and techniques, both in community engagement and building strategies.
7- Offer the students a supportive network for their future project and their promotion, opening new professional perspectives.

Offer a good mix of practical work, monitored by international and local mentors, and theoretical work, all this working in the frame of a social work engagement.

Credits info

The course is certified by the FBAUP, Fine Art School of the University of Porto.

After 3 summer schools, we'll also make a publication, documenting the achievements of the processes, mentioning all participants and their accomplishments.

Fee info

EUR 1200: This fee includes:
- the theoretical and practical courses
- the construction materials and availability of enough working tools. You're also very welcome to bring your favorite cordless drills (and put your name on it)!!
- lunch and dinner from Monday to Friday (vegetarian)

We're contemplating the possibility of offering some hosting within this fee. We will post updates regarding this in our website, Facebook page and blog soon.
Else, we'll suggest cheap hostel situation around the working sites to the summer program's students.

Application deadline May 29th, 2016


Armenian students are strongly encouraged to apply to the following programme: