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Announcement
February 24, 2022

Master of the Arts in Interior Architecture (MAIA)

Geneva University of Art and Design (HEAD)

Archipelago Architectures, HEAD - HEPIA, 2021. © Michel Giesbrecht.

Un lago de Jade Verde, Institute for Postnatural Studies, 2021. © Asier Rua.

Herbarium of Interiors, Salone internazionale del Mobile di Milano, Alcova, 2021. © Michel Giesbrecht.

Kosmos Architects, PROLOG - Polish pavilion at Venice Biennale, 2021. © Zacheta Art Gallery.

Philippe Rahm, Interior Weather, CCA, 2006. © Michel Legendre.

Space Duality, USM Design Grant, Red Dot Award Winner, 2020. © Emily Bonnet.

Decentring the Human in the Department of Space Design & Interior Architecture​.

From simple greenhouses to botanic facilities and from data centres to automated interiors, never before in history has architecture produced so many interiors for the non-human, challenging disciplinary notions on tectonics, light, comfort and entire regulatory frameworks. Once designed for and with the human, contemporary interiors have instead become exponentially complex materialisations where the politics of our present moment are played out. Ultimately, who are they for?

Titled Decentring the Human, the full-time, four-semester Master of the Arts in Interior Architecture (MAIA) at HEAD – Genève is a research-oriented graduate programme exploring the entanglements between interior spaces, environments and media through successive decentralisation: from the old totalitarianism that humans have built amongst themselves for centuries (inclusivity) to their position in relation to non-humans (ecology), and finally their relation to machines and their output, both real and virtual (technology).

The programme calls for a vision where the non-human will be central, empowering the agency of traditionally obliterated actors. This involves not only solutions to environmental challenges, but above all the study of the ecosystemic relations between non-living and living organisms (including humans) which is crucial for the discipline of interior architecture.

Team: international community
MAIA students work with an international community of interior designers, architects, artists, curators, and experts from different disciplines, constructing interior spaces that are articulated with the parallel narratives of magazines, films, exhibitions or publications. This transversal approach creates an arena of experimental conditions that proves challenging for teachers, students and real users.

Lecturers, speakers & guests include: Javier F. Contreras, Vera Sacchetti, Youri Kravtchenko, Philippe Rahm, Institute for Postnatural Studies, Kosmos Architects, Marina Otero, Lucia Pietroiusti, Bas Princen, Nicolas Nova, Lilet Breddels.

Professionalisation and network
MAIA students regularly work in cooperation with designers on professional projects carried out together with institutions, leading to a professional career of international impact. Similarly, the department is visible at international exhibitions and on platforms, such as the Salone del Mobile in Milan or Design Parade in Toulon. The programme includes permanent cooperation with the Joint Master of Architecture (JMA) of the schools of Geneva, Fribourg and Burgdorf, and with École Camondo in Paris. The 2022-2024 programme will actively collaborate with Volume Magazine. * MAIA enables its graduates to apply for registration on the Professional Register of Swiss Architects (REG A, Interior Architecture).

Curriculum: Mediated Representations
The programme is structured over four semesters: MAIA 1—Glossaries: A-, In-, Post-, More-than-Human Interiors / MAIA 2—Assemblages: Ecosystemic Interiors / MAIA 3—Iterations: Endless Decentralisations / MAIA 4—Diploma: Decentring-the-Human.

The language of the MA is English, with some classes in French.

MAIA offsets drawing as the dominating medium for representing interiors, envisioning any form of media as potentially architectural, from writing to photography, drawing to cinema. The programme explores contemporary interiors as platforms of ‘expanded media’, examining their belonging to different places and temporalities, whether physical or virtual, close or distant, ultimately disassociating courses and studios from any a priori form of representation.

2022 applications are now open. The deadline for the submission of the online application form is: Friday, April 8, 2022, at 5pm CEST (Swiss time).

For questions, please contact the Office of Studies: T +41 22 558 60 75 / +41 22 558 61 51. Email: admission.head [​at​] hesge.ch.

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