running October 2019 – May 2020
The Global Free Unit is running an Undergraduate design studio at the School of Architecture and Design at the University of Brighton. The Global Free Unit studio helps students to generate and realise projects within a structured and supportive environment. Students are able to connect their actions to their own history, experience and ethical position rather than the more codified values of education, practice or a single unit. Many students see their time in the GFU as the first stage of their future practice rather than the last stage of their education and many practices have emerged from it. Self- initiated projects have included projects sited in the country where students originate from, ongoing design research projects or live projects with friends, clients or community groups.
This coming year we have a project close to Brighton based in Folkestone where we will be working with the Kent Refugee Action Network (KRAN) to help them define their needs and to design a new building. This project is within the wider context of an international research project that looks at the way displaced people are welcomed into and supported in urban environments. Over the next three year the building you design will be built.
Students in the free Unit are closely supported with us acting as partners in the project. In addition, Students are invited to identify project friends who support them. The unit has developed structures to support projects these include a contract generated by students describing their aims, a gift project and a series of drawing and making workshops. Being in the Free unit is being part of a community of practice where students share and cooperate as equals. Students will work with staff and students from across the GFU network and have access to a global network of project “friends” drawn from leading academics, engineers, politicians, architects and cultural practitioners