estudio teddy cruz: from the global border to the border neighbourhood
In the context of a post 9-11 political equator that divides the world and the city between enclaves of mega-wealth and sectors of poverty, urbanities of labor and surveillance, the formal and informal, our institutions of architecture representation and display have lost their socio-political relevance and advocacy.
The work of estudio teddy cruz builds out of these trans-border urban dynamics between Tijuana and the San Diego border, using this territory of conflict as a backdrop to critically observe the clash between current top-down discriminating forms of urban economic re-development and planning legislature (as expressed through dramatic forms of unchecked eminent domain policies supporting privatization and NYMBYism), on one hand, and the emerging American neighborhoods nationwide made of immigrants, on the other, whose bottom-up spatial tactics of encroachment thrive on informality and alternative social organizational practices. Cruz’s projects primarily engage the micro scale of the neighborhood, transforming it into the urban laboratory of the 21st century. What is interesting here is not the ‘image’ of the informal but the instrumentality of its operational socio-economic and political procedures.