Collective Authorship: Private Histories of Public Architecture

Friday, November 17, at 6:30 PM, @ A5 Studio Space in Amzei Square no. 5 in Bucharest, marks the opening of the Collective Authorship exhibition, a project that investigates the oral history of building the House of the People initiated by visual artist Călin Dan in collaboration with architect Celia Ghyka, as a new episode of his long term artistic research, Emotional Architecture.

Starting from the hypothesis that great architectural ensembles are the result of a common effort, Collective Authorship aims to identify direct participants in the design and realization of the House of the People, while recording their memories as they are recalled in front of the camera. Followed by a corpus of documentary work related to urban, social, architectural significance of the House, the projects goes to give back the right to symbolic property to the thousands of people who worked on Spirii Hill in the ’80s.

By using the artistic method of the video interview, the project explores the role of collective authorship in producing grand scale architecture. Starting from the realities of designing and building, which are collective acts, not just authored projects of an architect or a group of architects, the project dwells with recovering a part of Bucharest’s memory as well as writing a social history of producing public architecture.

The House of The People (c) Calin Dan

Presenting a documentation that took place in the last 6 months, the Collective Authorship exhibition marks the beginning of a long term project that is set to build an interdisciplinary frame for realizing a database of interviews concentrated on the personal experience of the subjects. The latter are chosen on a series of social and professional criteria meant to reflect the structure of the personnel involved in the building of the edifice, from the design to various other phases and competences in execution.

The exhibition host, A5 Studio Space, is a space for creation that hosts temporary projects in the frame of the ART on DISPLAY program, together with other events organised by partners of the Ephemair Association. ART on DISPLAY reflects, in the windows of temporary unused spaces, sometimes found in insecure buildings for public access, the status quo of Romanian contemporary art, while activating urban spaces in Bucharest at the same time and attracting awareness upon the unsolved problem related to urban comfort in this city, through site specific interventions and installations.

The exhibition will be on show until November 22nd and will be followed by a public debate-conference with international participants which will take place at the same day at Casa Mincu, headquarters to the Romanian Order of Architects.

Guest-authors: Călin Dan & Celia Ghyka | Illustration: Sorina Vasilescu


Do you know someone who worked on the House of the People? The Collective Authorship is interested in your story. Let’s write history together! Contact us at, or by phone at +40736 556 013.

Check also the event on Facebook. More on Collective Authorship website.


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Romanian self-taught writer, based in Cyprus, interested in contemporary art, unconventional culture and gonzo journalism. Writing for almost a decade, he is agnostic, supports a censorship-free society and reads way less than he wants.

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