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PechaKucha Night was devised in Tokyo in February 2003 as an event for young designers to meet, network, and show their work in public. It has turned into a massive celebration, with events happening in hundreds of cities around the world, inspiring creatives worldwide.

Drawing its name from the Japanese term for the sound of "chit chat," it rests on a presentation format that is based on a simple idea: 20 images x 20 seconds. It's a format that makes presentations concise, and keeps things moving at a rapid pace.

Joseph Montalbano expressed his philosophy about defamiliarization in architecture and how this concept can put us in touch with experiences that transcend thought.  He explained why architectural “Practice” (doing something repeatedly to improve its performance) rarely results in compelling experiences.  He questioned why architecture cannot be dreamlike?  Why architecture cannot speak a language of its own, and transcend all known categories of description?

Defamiliarization in architecture allows architectural practice to be uninhibited, improvisational, and extraordinarily explorative.  It allows curiosity and wonder to outweigh any fears for the unknown.  While an architectural object, perhaps, cannot be transcendent, it can be a catalyst for a transcendental experience.

Joseph’s final claim suggested architects have a responsibility to behave, on many levels, as carefree and uninhibited as a 3 year old and should ignore, whenever possible, whether an idea is even thought possible.  In this way architecture might enable us to have transcendental experiences all the time.


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