AVALANCHE is a research project led by three French architectural and urban design offices: TVK, Anyoji Beltrando and KH Studio. It is an elastic research unit, nurtured by design practitioners and deliberately opened to other fields. AVALANCHE ambitions to step aside from the ordinary urban study in order to investigate the changes of the world urban phenomena, through a transdisciplinary and dynamic approach. The focus of AVALANCHE’s “eye to eye” approach is that of the extreme encounters of the urban expanding realm with the current environmental shift. The goal of our exploration is to help decipher the ongoing global transition towards urban vulnerability. Our method is the direct contact with the designers, sociologists, historians, political actors that deal with this transition in extreme and emblematic contexts.




Liquid Earth

An article by AVALANCHE

“The Mediterranean Sea, a space where some of the most powerful forms of urban living et de la ville were born is today a vertiginous place. The Sea is at the same time, place of leisure and death, a burning border between north and south. But what makes it truly a space of paradox—etymology-speaking, going against the doxa, the common belief—is nested in its new status. From ancient physical boundary, the Mediterranean Sea has become a bridge between oceans, an essential link in the world’s new circularity.

     From its ancient paradigm as an inland sea, uniting communities, it has shifted to an open maritime space, connected and eventually absorbed in the global system. The Mediterranean Sea is a space occupied and largely transformed by humankind.”

Edited and translated by Justinien Tribillon. 

Published in English in Migrant Journal 3, “Flowing Grounds”, 2017.

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Read “Liquid Earth” online

La Méditerranée au milieu de la mer

An article by AVALANCHE

« Quand on regarde la mutation de la condition méditerranéenne dans le temps, avec à l’esprit les défis du présent, l’histoire de cette mer intérieure semble raconter la mythologie fondatrice d’une ère planétaire dont l’Homme serait le maître irresponsable. La domestication absolue de ce monde par nature hostile constitue un objectif encore inaccessible mais, aspiration mentale toujours dépassée et remise en cause, elle a fourni une ligne d’horizon sur laquelle les groupes humains ont construit leurs ambitions.

     Si le mythe de Babel est l’archétype de la métropole, où la croisée des axes de fondation de la grande ville révèle une troisième dimension, celle de la hauteur ; la conquête de la mer est l’expression d’un autre dessein  irrépressible, celui de la conquête de l’horizon. C’est l’histoire d’une prise de possession progressive de l’espace maritime, jusqu’à devenir un espace déterminant. »

Published in French in Classeur Magazine 2, “Mare Nostrum”, 2017.

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Learning from vulnerability: environmental shock strategies in Chile

An article by AVALANCHE

Base one of AVALANCHE’s research is Chile. A country in which extreme geographic conditions evoke urban modernity and its defining socio-economical patterns creating a major transformation, giving interesting insights on emerging innovative urban design strategies.
     AVALANCHE exploration of the Chilean context brought the group to interview a series of witnesses of the environment related urban transition. AVALANCHE collected testimonies and experiences directly linked to a series of key “Chilean episodes” showing possible conflicts between extreme, archetypical urban conditions and environmental shocks. We oriented these testimonies towards emergent planning issues. Sometimes divergent or controversial, they all question the way Chile's urban future can be conceived.
     Among the interviewed, the experience of major active practitioners of the post-shock projects in Chile, such as Alejandro Aravena (architect and founder of ELEMENTAL), Rodrigo Araya (anthropologist, associate director at Tironi Associados) and Alejandro Gutierrez (engineer, associate director at ARUP), is articulated with the critical approaches of experts such as Gabriel Salazar (Historian, National History prize 2006), Jorge Heitmann (architect, and teacher at the Universidad Politecnica de Santiago) or Sofia Sagues (sociologist and responsible for participation in the CREO Antofagasta).

To be published.



Oct. 2018

David Enon and Alessandro delli Ponti lectured at Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture de Versailles, France for the symposium Architecture de la catastrophe, lieux et rituels de l'utopie et de la dystopie.

Nov. 2017

Launch of Migrant Journal 3, “Flowing Grounds”, with our article “Liquid Earth” during Offprint Paris 2017 at École des Beaux Arts de Paris.

Oct. 2017

Launch of Classeur magazine 2, “Mare Nostrum”, containing the article by AVALANCHE “La Méditerranée au milieu de la mer” at Solo Galerie, Paris.

Oct. 2015

Pierre Alain Trévelo and Yannick Beltrando lectured at Cambridge University for the Urban Emergencies:Emergent Urbanism conference about Environmental shock strategies in Chile.