Artist selected by López Munuera, Iván at 2010

Architecture and teratoscopy or monsters as signs


What lies behind architecture’s mediating power, its approach towards the medium? Architecture multiplies by begetting anomalous creatures that invade the medium in exceptional shapes, patient monsters, sphinxes, minotaurs, UHFs… Its mediating power draws from three sources:


(1) The not strictly terminological nature of the questions posed: mediated architecture is like a network that connects opposing regimes, like statutes of states of things, and it’s impossible and undesirable to set up a radical wedge between the regimes and their objects.


(2) The effective relations and hermeneutic arrangement of contents make up endless sources of interpretation: mediation represents a supplementary surplus state that doesn’t run out on the page, but activates its action through mediating.


(3) The problematic nature of staging and the unique nature of the format: in each mediation the format is the information itself.


UHF is a hapax. UHF makes mistakes. UHF has only two rules. UHF spreads rumours. Because mediating is not wiping clean.


1. What made you choose art as a profession?
The UHF collective was set up as a space for research, discussion and promotion of areas of interest to architecture. It was more of a necessary cultural practice than a strictly professional choice.


2. How would you define your work?
Like setting up a retroactive channel of communication between a publication and what surrounds it through an object of desire.


3. What subjects are you interested in?
Different ways of living. Ways of representing public space within consumer spaces. Maps as project tools and instruments of power. The way our society administers information. Games, bets, bingo and gambling dens as emergency spaces of social action. The relationship between creating public space and the construction of personal identity. How mistakes, risks, noise and accidents are necessary, useful tools in all architectural processes. Teratology. Rumours, spectres and virtualisations like the atmospheric material that causes events. Managing desire.


4. What resources – formal or otherwise – do you use in your work?
The chief resource is making a unique format for each subject. Most of UHF’s work is presented in a publication and adapted for different media: silkscreen printed onto rubber, printed in the small ads, as a vacuum-sealed leg of ham, in a betting game, in a giant bar of soap, as a winning hand, on an infinitely reusable bingo card, in a jar of fish honey, as the set for a porno film, as a maze or a rumour.


5. What relationship does your work have with reality? What are your raw materials?
UHF plays the role of another actor in the process of constructing architectural reality. UHF is a twofold player (receiver/agent). Its raw material involves tactically channelling information flows to create operative project paths, as well as conceiving creative processes. Reality is never a raw material.


6. What, according to you, is the point of art?
Art is always a collective communicative action. This social construction has a relational status and is therefore never (exclusively) ornamental since it inevitably performs reality as a leading political agent. Art intensifies, rediscovers and applies knowledge and promotes experiences by linking differential singularities written in operative gratuities. Art twists and archives language; it deploys tactics. It doesn’t have a point as such, but it does have an effectual purpose.


7. How do you hope the public will receive your work? What audience are you aiming at?
The audience isn’t involved at the end of the process. They’re invited to take part by providing open content related to the subject of the research in progress. The collective works as a mediator and collector. The aim is to be useful to people it might be useful to (that’s the target public). Any part of UHF can be reproduced, stored and transmitted by any means, be it electronic, mechanical, optical, chemical, recording or photocopied. We hope the public reproduces it, stores it and passes it on.


8. What qualifications have you got? What do you value most from your time in education?
The collective is currently made up of a team of Madrid-based architects, philosophers and students who were educated in different educational environments, as well as through the media. Most of our education came from the television: we’ve acquired the skills to create a channel, the UHF carrier, which can have productions and interferences.


9. How would you define your current professional situation? And in the future?
The collective is always operative. It varies only in intensity. At the moment it’s gathering information to create a new object of study. In addition, it combines research and editorial production with individual work in different contexts linked to producing contemporary architecture and philosophy.


10. Many artists say it’s difficult to make a living from their work; how do economic considerations affect you when it comes to work? Do you think this has a bearing on your work?
UHF is a self-financed collective, which gives it its freedom. Each piece of research takes shape in irregular publications. Economic considerations are an inherent and necessary part of professional work; it’s not very professional to think of this as duress. Economic limitations are simply another rule of the game.


11. What do you look for or expect from your relationship with promoters and curators? What advantages and difficulties have you found with these relationships?
Freedom of ideas and critical skills. Curators and promoters are responsible for completing works and socialising them. The main difficulties we’ve had have been to agree on a common language to enable communication. Exchange and sound criticism is also an advantage.


12. What do you think sets the arts scene in Madrid apart from elsewhere? What would you say are its pluses and minuses?
Although the arts scene in Madrid is undergoing a process of change, its main plus is that it is a great space for deploying tactics for appropriating the edges. Although other places make use of their cultural capital, in Madrid you can occupy spaces and re-programme them. Within the field of architecture it needs to reinforce its critical artillery.



Curriculum vitae

UHF, investigación y la difusión contemporáneas
Viven y trabajan en/Live and work in: Madrid.

David Archilla (Madrid, 1976)
Elena Bartolomé (Bilbao, 1976)
Rafael Bermejo (Madrid, 1976)
Uriel Fogué (Madrid, 1976)
Javier Galiana (Madrid, 1976)
Fermina Garrido (Madrid, 1976)
David González (Madrid, 1976)
Ángela Méndez (Madrid, 1976)
Ignacio Ontiveros (Madrid, 1976)
Carlos Palacios (Madrid, 1976)
Iván de los Ríos (Madrid, 1977)

Formación Académica/Education
David Archilla
Dr. Arquitecto, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 2008; Dr. Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2001; Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2001.

Elena Bartolomé
Arquitecta, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2008.

Rafael Bermejo
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2004.

Uriel Fogué
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2002.

Javier Galiana
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2002.

Fermina Garrido
Arquitecta, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2002.

David González
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2006.

Ángela Méndez
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2006.

Ignacio Ontiveros
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2009.

Carlos Palacios
Arquitecto, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid, 2009.

Iván de los Ríos
Dr. en Filosofía, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 2009.


Exposiciones Colectivas/Group Exhibitions
Is this Spain?, Saint Pancras Crypt Gallery, London.


Freshmadrid, Fundación COAM, Madrid; Centro Cultural Planetario, Museo de Bogotá; Ras Gallery, Barcelona; V Bienal Iberoamericana de Arquitectura y Urbanismo, Intendencia Municipal de Montevideo, Montevideo; Centre international pour la ville, l'architecture et le paysage, C.I.V.A., Bruxelles; MARQ, Buenos Aires.


Panorama Emergente Iberoamericano, IV Bienal de Lima; Bienal Internacional de São Paulo.


Artickectours, Los 29 enchufes, Madrid.


I Festival >Internacional de arte, ciencia y tecnología. Dinámicas Fluidas, Centro Cultural Conde Duque, Madrid.


ZOOM 01 Madrid-Chicago, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, ETSAM, Madrid.




Archibingo, eme3 COLLAPSE, 4rd Festival d’Arquitectura, Barcelona.




Miel de pescado, Los 29 enchufes, Madrid.


UHF03: MAPAS, Madrid.
UHF03+: TIMBA GOSTOSA DO MAPAS, Mercado de Fuencarral, Madrid.
Cibervisión, ARCO 02, Madrid.
Hocus Pocus, Centro Cultural Conde Duque, Madrid.
Más Mapas, Rojo, Barcelona.


Mapas de España, Festival Metápolis 2.0, Barcelona.




Glta. Bilbao 3, 4º2. 28004
Madrid (+34) 91445977