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Research Seminar in Architecture Series - Researching the Archives

Marisa Cortright and Elisa M. Lopez present their archival research at ArkDes

Left: Susanne Wasson Tucker at Svensk Form lighting exhibition in Chicago. Right: Photograph of work
Left: Susanne Wasson Tucker at Svensk Form lighting exhibition in Chicago. Right: Photograph of worker housing at Yekepa (Liberia) by Walter Bauer, 1961-63.

Tid: Fr 2023-11-24 kl 13.15

Plats: A608

Videolänk: https://kth-se.zoom.us/j/67185547897

Språk: English

Medverkande: Marisa Cortright and Elisa Maria Lopez

Women at work in the ArkDes archive by Marisa Cortright

“Women at work in the ArkDes archive” builds on the mapping of women that Frida Nerdal compiled during her guest research project in 2022, “Kvinnor i ArkDes samling.” By looking at select examples of women’s careers in roles public and private, domestic and international, in the fields of design, policy, and publishing, it asks what kinds of architectural labor did women perform in Sweden between the 1930s and 1960s? Who – in terms of class and professional background – had the opportunity to work in architecture? This project focuses on the first in-depth research into the personal collection of Susanne Wasson Tucker, a Swedish architect little known in Sweden or abroad, but with a prolific career representing Swedish industrial design internationally through numerous exhibitions she curated and designed on behalf of Svensk Form.

Company Towns and Housing for Workers in Modernizing Sweden by Elisa Maria Lopez

The project “Company Towns and Housing for Workers in Modernizing Sweden” investigates the architecture, design, planning, and construction of Swedish industrial communities in the 20th century. At present, the project focuses on a handful of industrial community projects, architects, and places across Sweden – and the world – represented in ArkDes archives. Through these diverse materials, I ask: How do built environments and green spaces of Swedish company towns tell different stories about the relations between Swedish industry and society? How have these relations been imagined, designed, materialized, managed, and transformed in the spaces of work and everyday life?


Marisa Cortright is an architectural worker based in Zagreb. She is currently a Guest Researcher at ArkDes in Stockholm and the Guest Editor of the Avery Review at Columbia University GSAPP. In 2021, she published a book of essays, “‘Can This Be? Surely This Cannot Be?’ Architectural Workers Organizing in Europe" with the VI PER Gallery in Prague.

Elisa Maria Lopez is an anthropologist and postdoctoral Researcher at KTH School of Architecture, as part of the VR-funded project “Utopia 2.0: Nature-Thinking in Nordic New Towns of the Past, Present, and Future”. During Fall/Winter 2023-2024, she is also a Guest Researcher at ArkDes, the Swedish Center for Architecture and Design.