• I DWELL NOW [photography] 2013

    diy housing in contemporary greece
    more photos here
    A collection of extemporaneous buildings, individual or forming districts / communities. A contemporary vernacular architecture formed by its dwellers and the landscape surrounding them. An Architecture that can refer to marginalized slums and natural building.
    Ephemeral, seasonal or permanent structures of cheap and easily accessible materials such as natural or recycled. Sites with unclear boundaries of the interior and exterior, often common or without property regime, which can be created by a single dweller or by a series of ephemeral inhabitants.
    Formed by the housing need of the human body and its current needs, these shelters are imposed on weak and marginalized sections of society but for other social sections, they are chosen by free will .
    The purpose of this on going project is to help them emerge as cultural heritage, historic and collective memory vehicles. Highlighting another approach of habitation and building, liberated from monumentality and expert groups designing, focusing on the present.
    concept, research, photography: Elli Vassalou
    The project was initiated and presented in the architectural photography workshop of Monumenta organisation Photographing Monuments, topographies of cultural heritage: professors Stergios Karavatou and Jeff Vanderpool, March 2013. Group exhibition Athens House of photography 2013, Romantzo Cultural space 2014, Athens GR
  • athens x4 [architectural competition] 2010

    Αρχιτεκτονική Ομάδα: Λουίζα Αναγνώστου, Έλλη Βασσάλου, Θάλεια Νινιού
    Πολιτικός μηχανικός: Αφροδίτη Φωτίου
    Η επιδίωξη της παρούσας πρότασης είναι η ενεργοποίηση της έννοιας της γειτονιάς, η δημιουργία αστικών σχέσεων μεταξύ των κατοίκων. To σημείο αναφοράς αυτού του εγχειρήματος είναι o σταυρός, ο νέος πυρήνας του οικοδομικού τετραγώνου. Το κάλεσμα των κατοίκων στην συμμετοχή των κοινών, η κλιμάκωση της ιδιωτικής ζωής από τον χώρο του διαμερίσματος στον δημόσιο χώρο της γειτονιάς μεταφέρεται συμβολικά στον σχεδιασμό. Αυτό υλοποιείται με την χρήση της χρωματικής παλέτας των τεντών, ορόσημο της Αθηναϊκής πολυκατοικίας, στα υλικά του νέου αστικού εδάφους. Κεντρικό στοιχείο του σχεδιασμού είναι η επαναφορά του δημόσιου αγαθού του νερού στον δημόσιο χώρο. Τοποθετούνται κρίνες στην καρδιά του κάθε οικοδομικού τετραγώνου και στις εισόδους των κοινοτικών κέντρων, που προτείνεται να στεγαστούν στα κενά κτήρια αρχιτεκτονικού ενδιαφέροντος. Στα πλαίσια του αειφόρου σχεδιασμού προτείνεται η ανακύκλωση των δομικών υλικών, η φύτευση της περιοχής, η ανακύκλωση του νερού και η διαχείριση των απορριμάτων για τα οποία υπεύθυνοι θα είναι και οι ίδιοι οι κάτοικοι της περιοχής.
  • astiko horio [thesis, collective action] 2009

    Αστικό χωριό – Proposal of Urban Inhabitancy in a District of Cholargos [Athens, Greece]


    Thesis, December 2009
    Anagnostou Louiza, Vassalou Elli
    Supervisor: N.P.Kazeros
    University of Patras, Polytechnic School, Department of Architecture
    Astiko Ηorio [urban village] is a project inspired by the plethora of olive trees located in the suburban environment of Cholargos and evolved to a holistic design of the public landscape exploring a different practice of urban inhabitancy.
    The main idea concerns collective urban cultivation; exploring the potentials of a biocommunity, which is self-organized, self-sufficient and built upon relations of solidarity and confidence. Our research tool was a collective action in the public space; the olive harvesting on the districts sidewalks. The action contributed to the validation of the collective identity and generated local designing directions that emerged not only from the urban geography but also from the active participation of people.
    Through further research of the local flora and fauna, urban and natural anaglyph, collective memory, contemporary urban situation and needs we designed a sustainable urban field that spreads out to the streets of the area.
    Community buildings and gardens helps small neighbourhood collectives to sprout. Greenways conjoin the city with the Hymettus Mountain, cooling the atmosphere of the city and enabling wild [and domestic] life to gain lost space.
    The revelation of an old stream generates the circular city's metabolism. The stream creates designing events relevant to the memory of past geography and allows observation of seasonal cycles.
    The project is about giving back to people and nature the city's public space [earth], to re-inhabit and shape it dialectical. In other ways, it's a proposal of how urban and agricultural ways of living can stop being competitive but can create a viable blend.
  • Interurban spaces [research paper] 2008

    Interurban Spaces - travelling through Athens and Patras
    Research Paper, University of Patras, School of Engineering, Department of Architecture, Patras 2008
    By Elli Vassalou
    supervisor N.P.Kazeros
    read the paper here [Greek only]
    Travelling creates a discontinuity in our everyday lives. Interurban space consists a heterotopia and heterochrony. It is the intermediate space that connects urban, rural space and natural environment. It is always in transition.
    This research paper deals with the notion of interurban space approaching it through personal experiences and embodiment. As case study, I deal with travelling through Athens ↔ Patras, a route that I often used to do as a student in the University of Patras by public transport. Through personal observations and interviews with other travellers, I study perception and signification of Interurban space.
    Mobility and contemporary notion of travel are the subject matters as well as the interpretation of space as a “construction” developed by the means of transport moving through land and the conception of landscape through movement.
    My main concern is to analyse and highlight the qualities and capabilities of interurban as ground of common existence and as a meeting place with otherness.Interurban space as a transitional space is fully functional when people are in full antithesis with their traditional time. This way it provides a topos to create experimental situations, social relations and communal experiences as a resistance in the privatization and individualism of all aspects of modern life.
  • How to Construct Public Space between Art and Education? [Workshop] 2007

    The workshop was presented in the second international conference on the ARTS in Society within the context of the contemporary art exhibition Documenta 12 [Kassel, august 2007] programme
    Participants from around the world are invited to discuss the workshop as alternative production site, between art and education. Workshops can provide ways for producing creative work, outside traditional art and education frames. In the context of increasing globalization and privatization of education, as well as the increasing commercialization of art, workshops can function as working environments to establish alternative modes of pedagogy and cultural production, based on experimantation, process, collective work, sharing ideas and skills, collaboration, intervention in everyday environments, etc. We want to discuss the workshop as a new merging site of art, education and everyday space. We will present examples of site-specific workshops, initiated at the Laboratory for Visual Arts, at the Department of Architecture, University of Patras. Key issues to be addressed are: the workshop as self-organized initiative to respond quickly to emergent city situations, forms of collaboration, discussion (as form of intervention), mobility (as expansion of the range of an action / activation of different places) networking practices, communication modes, hospitality, public forum, network of localities.  read more here
    Working team: Panos Kouros [Artist] – Nikos Kazeros [Architect] Dafni Aidoni, Marina Biza, Vicky Polychronopoulou, Elli Vassalou, Aggeliki Zervou [students, Department of Architecture, University of Patras]
  • Urban Tells | E.G.Ladopoulos [research, web archive, video performance] 2006

    laboratory for visual arts | department of architecture | university of Patras
    Daphne Aidoni, Elli Vassalou, Marina Biza
    A story, in order to be kept alive, needs to be narrated, a building in order to stay alive needs to be experienced.
    The E.G.Ladopoulos paper industry´s building is one of the most historic industrial sites in the city of Patras and also one of the most forgotten, even though for decades since 1928 the company was one of the largest of the Balkans. In the beginning of the 90´s, within the context of a general deindustrialization, the E.G.L. factory closed, ¨writing the epilogue of Patras´ industrial era¨. Since then, the factory complex remains abandoned, discretely showing the town’s history, a silent witness of the working class living conditions and struggles. A cultural heritage that the institutions decides to forget and hide behind the ¨monuments¨ of the dominant culture. Entering into the former E.G.L. factory, we are trying to approach time and space through various layers, levels and actions. We approach this hidden history seeking the paper industry’s traces: the building complex, the urban myths, the neighbours’ and former workers’ personal memories, the stigma it has left upon working class struggles and the history of the city. We create new narrations through improvisation in the space, letting the body experience and find the stories that need to be told. The archive of this research is published on the internet, creating a new trace of the factory in the world wide web.
  • House4Talk [research, collective action] 2006

    house4talk.blogspot.gr 4 discussions in 4 houses, collective initiative for the construction of public space between students and the city. A collaborative project evolving in parallel to the exhibition "what remains is future" Patras cultural city of Europe 2006. 4 student houses open their doors and host four open conversations related to the subjects of student residence, the relationship between public and private space and the creation of a public forum inside the cell of a private residence.
    "0" magazine, art exhibition What Remains is Future, Patras  2006