Inhabit the air
Santiago Cirugeda

“Subversive”, “revolutionary” and "necessary" are appropriate adjectives to describe the work of Santiago Cirugeda.


This artist and social architect from Seville focuses his mind, heart and sweat on taking advantage of legal loopholes for the benefit of the community, and his work is admired and recognised throughout the world. Cirugeda regularly occupies public spaces with containers, he constructs prosthetics on façades, patios, roofs and even on plots of land with the agreement of local residents, creating protocols that can be used by the citizens’ collectives themselves, both for the improvement of urban fragments and for the development of specific projects that will make it possible to resolve housing issues. All of this in what is a negotiation between legality and illegality, to help us remember the enormous control to which we are subjected.

In 2003, he set up the Recetas Urbanas (Urban Recipes) team to carry out subversive projects in different areas of urban reality that will help people bear the burden of this complicated social life. He also serves as an advisor for urban planning and teaching projects in various countries around the world. His work has received numerous awards and recognition at the international level such as the International Fellowship of the RIBA, the FAD medal, the Global Award for Sustainable Architecture (2015), the Ones Mediterrània award (2016), and the Curry Stone Design Prize (2017).

Cirugeda will build a house in the interior of Nave 11 together with women collectives of the city of Madrid, led and trained by the Recetas Urbanas team (which has considerable experience in collective do-it-yourself construction) with students of Escuela Artediez  and GANDIABLASCO. Suspended in the air, all this building’s artistic potential will be developed by inviting such creators as Llorenç Barber and Montserrat Palacios, Ignacio Marín Bocanegra, Vértebro, Los Bárbaros and spectators to live and experience it intensely. 

“We will begin the project by searching for, purchasing, and stockpiling materials. We will build a house in the air, high up, so we can find ourselves in an even stranger situation where there are no tenants or landlords, where its use in time is intensified, where we have to find a way to live it. The experience its inhabitants can unfurl will be complemented by the social function inherent in the materials with which the house will be built.

The work of Recetas Urbanas has been marked over the last 20 years by the incorporation of actors and users to their construction processes and the acquisition of the rights to use this public capital”, Cirugeda explains.

8 - 30 june

Tuesday and Wednesday from 5 to 8pm; Friday 8 and Saturday 23 from 5 to 8pm; Sunday 17 and 24 from noon to 8pm

Nave 11. Sala Fernando Arrabal

Free admission