Open Call: Homage to Togetherness | Small-scale Low-tech Architecture in Lazaropole

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The Covid-19 outbreak completely changed the landscape of the everyday throughout the whole world. We have seen striking images of the most famous and beautiful cities completely emptied of human life. We have seen surreal images of booming nature and felt as surplus in the world that is our home. We have started to recognize what is already named “a visual landscape of Covid-19” consisted of sanitarian and disciplinarian techniques that impose new orders of everyday functioning - the “two-metre rule” is the new architect that draws queues and grids on public space layouts. We have become faceless figures that practice distancing.

The Student Architectural Competition The Last Resort - Remembering Spatial Patterns of Togetherness aims to motivate an inverse imaginative response to this new visual landscape as an action of inner rebellion that we must not forget the intrinsic character of architecture - to bring together, to connect! What we want to provoke and compile is homage to togetherness!

We invite students to remember, to explore, to learn, to think of spatial patterns that promote the socially interactive, the inclusive, the integrative, the playful, the empathetic, the interstitial. The students are expected to design small-scale, low-tech projects based on the abovementioned intentions.

The word “resort” has a double meaning, one being “a place where people can go on vacation to relax or for an activity they enjoy” and the other (especially when used with ‘the last’) is “the fact of doing something in a particular situation because there is no other way of achieving something.” This collective imaginative resort, compiled of every student’s individual, small-scale project based on their own idea of togetherness at the end of the competition, will represent an important message that architecture can resist, rather than reflect, this temporal external reality of social distancing.

Task Description

The students are expected to master and demonstrate level of understanding of the means by which architecture situates togetherness through the design process of a small-scale, low-tech architecture in the Macedonian village of Lazaropole.


The programme should regard the notion of leisure time and the activities people enjoy doing together - relaxing, cultivating through art, learning, enjoying the city and nature, reflecting the values of local culture and anything else we are deprived from right now. We encourage students to get personally involved and to design taking account of the activities they miss and to envision situation of togetherness through the scope of their age and inner experience.


The village/rural settlement of Lazaropole is situated on a plateau at Mount Bistra at 1,350 m altitude, making it one of the highest settlements in North Macedonia. Lazaropole, etymologically comes from an Old Slavic word (lazorъ) meaning a large area without forest, a depiction that really fits the natural structure of the village. There are about 400 houses in the village. The older ones reveal the traces of the Mijaci highland building style.

Competition Location

The entering road of Lazaropole leads directly to the front façade of the Kalin Hotel. There, it expands into a triangular vernacular “piazza” that functions as a social core of the village. The road is characterized with very low traffic intensity and is perceived as a safe pedestrian venture. The north side of this “piazza” is the south façade of the Kalin Hotel. There are public functions on its east side, such as the local store and the community club. The competition location is an empty plot that forms an angle of greenery between the west side of this “piazza” and the extension of the road towards the west, in a block with residential houses. There is a temporary structure that functions as a bakery at the very angle. There is a public faucet at the western edge of the competition location.

The international competition is the lead activity of the 29th Session Summer School of Architecture, the Faculty of Architecture, Ss. Cyril and Methodius organizes traditionally for 29 years in a row.

Please check the official link of the open call to acquire all information and the necessary documentation which is not attached to this listing due to size.