The Reasons Offsite: SUMMARY studio

The Reasons Offsite Architecture Exhibition, SUMMARY studio Porto

The Reasons Offsite by SUMMARY studio

Architecture Exhibition News in 2019

11 June 2019

The Reasons Offsite

an immersive experience through virtual reality, by SUMMARY studio

The Reasons Offsite is an exhibition on prefabricated and modular architecture. This project was displayed in Albania (at Tirana Architecture Week, September 2018) and at the United States of America (at Boston Society of Architects, March 2019). At this moment there are two upcoming editions, in Edinburgh and in Weimar, as part of the Bauhaus centenary celebration.

Tirana Architecture Week:
Tirana Architecture Week
photo © Polis University

This curatorial project intends to organize, embody and share the research work that has been done by SUMMARY studio for the last three years, as a fundamental tool for its architectural practice. Simultaneously, several architects from the research and curatorial field cooperate in the development of this work, such as Pedro Alonso & Hugo Palmarola, Pablo Jimenez-Moreno, Jorge Christie & Martín Alvarez and Yona Friedman.

The exhibition’s goal is to create a radiography of the several stages of offsite architecture’s evolution, from the 17th century on, through a critical rather than historical point of view. The Reasons Offsite presents 25 buildings or building systems arranged into 5 groups – exploration, emergency situation, cost-optimization, technological statement and lifestyle paradigm – representing the main reason why each project was conceived for.

The selection of these examples, including famous and anonymous architecture, was done avoiding judgments on topics such as aesthetics or economic success, and instead taking into consideration only the features that made those buildings precursors in the field of offsite construction.

The Reasons Offsite Virtual Exhibition by SUMMARY studio Porto
photo © SUMMARY studio, Porto

This work displays the classical triptych of any architectural exhibition: images, texts and models. However, in this case, these elements are virtually presented. By using a VR Oculus Rift kit, the audiences are transported to a 20x20m virtual space where they can go through the exhibition, interact with the content and manipulate and rotate the models, to analyse them from every angle.

The Reasons Offsite Virtual Exhibition by SUMMARY studio Porto
photo © SUMMARY studio, Porto

The virtual format allows exhibiting in an immaterial way. Thus, transferring the content and assembling/disassembling this exhibition doesn’t require shipping or installing physical objects, enabling a significant reduction of costs and the elimination of waste production. At the same time, it contributes to the flexibility of the exhibition.

Due to its independence from the physical space, this work is adaptable to rooms with different dimensions and configurations. Somehow, this format is also related with its content – virtuality is an inherent characteristic of offsite architecture as it is produced in a certain place to be applied and used in a different location, in a different reality.

The Reasons Offsite Virtual Exhibition by SUMMARY studio Porto
photo © SUMMARY studio, Porto

The contemporary context – the World’s increasing urban population in an unprecedented way, the growing need for immediacy based in an Uber/Ikea/AirBNB-like lifestyle and the level of technological sophistication we have reached – motivates The Reasons Offsite as a rediscovery of the concept of prefabrication, and as a means to understand its past and most of all envisaging its future.

The Reasons Offsite Virtual Exhibition by SUMMARY studio Porto

During 2019, The Reasons Offsite will be in display at the Edinburgh College of Art, from June 20th to 30th, and at the Neufert box in Weimar, from September 28th to October 11th.

General Information

Project Name: The Reasons Offsite

Type: Architectural Exhibition

Curator: SUMMARY ( more info: / [email protected] )

The Reasons Offsite at Boston Society of Architects, MA, USA:
The Reasons Offsite at Boston Society of Architects, MA, USA
photo © Luca Sabbadini


Pedro Ignacio Alonso & Hugo Palmarola

Pablo Jimenez-Moreno

Jorge Christie & Martín Alvarez

Yona Friedman


Samuel Gonçalves (Principal/Founder)

Inês Rodrigues (Project Manager)

João Meira (Architect)

Borbála Papp (Architect)

Luca Sabbadini (VR programmer)

Supported by: Câmara Municipal do Porto

Left column (from top)
1 – Crystal Palace, London (UK). Photo: Philip Henry Delamotte / source: Smithsonian libraries
2 – All plastic house. Author: Ionel Schein. Photo © Popular Mechanics, Aug 1956 / open source:
3 – Kiosk K67. Author: Saša J. Mächtig. Photo Courtesy © MAO (Museum of Architecture and Design, Ljubljana)
4 – Unité d’habitation, Berlin (Germany). Author: Le Corbusier. Philipp Mohr Design, photo courtesy © Didier Gaillard-Hohlweg

Right column (from top)
5 – Dymaxion House. Author: Buckminster Fuller. Photo courtesy © The Estate of R. Buckminster Fuller
6 – Maison Tropicale. Authors: Jean Prouvé, Henri Prouvé. Photo source/courtesy ©
7 – CCA – Cancer Center Amsterdam (facade design), Amsterdam (the Netherlands). Author: MVRDV. Photo courtesy © MVRDV
The Reasons Offsite Virtual Exhibition by SUMMARY studio Porto
photo © SUMMARY studio, Porto

The Reasons Offsite image / information from SUMMARY studio

Architecture Exhibitions

Contemporary Architectural Exhibitions, alphabetical:

Exhibitions – chronological list – selection below:

Aedes Gallery Berlin Exhibition

Alvaro Siza Exhibition

GRAFT Architecture Exhibition

Kunstfort Asperen Exhibition

Office of the Future

OMA Exhibition

Powerhouse Museum Exhibition

Zaha Hadid Exhibition Padua

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