Common Accounts — the office of Igor Bragado and Daniels Faculty Sessional Lecturer Miles Gertler — has been shortlisted to represent Canada at the 2020 Venice Biennale in Architecture.
Their proposal, "After Life," interrogates the intensifying attention on the body:
With the prospect of humanity's demise at the planetary scale, the body is more present than ever — in architectural discourse, in social media, and in the popular imaginary — and so too is the spectre of a post-human future as the motivating force of its ubiquity. Paradoxically, there is arguably no other time in history when the average human being has been as drawn to beautifying, hardening, and enhancing itself than now, confronted with the crisis of the body's ultimate disappearance. After Life proposes to see the body anew, as a product of this context.
Common Accounts is recognized for their work in the design of death and the virtual afterlife, including the project Three Ordinary Funerals, a prototypical funeral home produced for the Seoul Biennial on Architecture and Urbanism, now in the permanent collection of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Korea. The office's work in architecture and self-design has expanded to an ongoing collaboration with Sephora for experimental new spaces and broadcast platforms in their Shanghai flagship.
Gertler and Bragado are the recipients of the 2016 Suzanne K. Underwood Prize from Princeton University and have recently lectured at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Korea (Seoul), the Harvard GSD (Cambridge), Alserkal Avenue (Dubai), Cornell University AAP (Ithaca), and Soho House (Istanbul).
Image, top: Three Ordinary Funerals, Common Accounts, 2017. Collection of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Korea (Seoul).