The U.S. Embassy in Havana -- 2020
The US has presented an image of both alliance and disunion in foreign territories through a particular building typology, the embassy. By design, the embassy is meant to be a place of diplomacy that bridges two nations and its citizens, however, those relationships are perpetually in flux. The current typology deals with its presence in the host city and the struggle of equilibrium in a society that is constantly changing and is in tension with these rigid permanent buildings. The US embassy does not allow for flexibility by reproducing an image of their foreign policy through an Architectural DNA (the OBO code) of materials and operations.
Using the history of the US Embassy in Havana this project focuses on the political-cultural image of the building, and the performance that happens around diplomatic relationships and its need to be seen and unseen. By reconstruction and manipulation of the image, this thesis employs the optical deceptions reserved for the state and delaminates the materialized power over civilians to begin understanding a building in flux by instigating new operations hierarchies, symmetries, and organizations that are typically fixed in authority relations.