Recasting the convivial tool
Master of Architecture thesis
The state of Zacatecas sees more outmigration than any other state in Mexico, due to a reliance on U.S. labor demand. The towns of Zacatecas are underpopulated and not maintained as they were in the era before free trade with the U.S. Traditional agricultural and building skills are all but extinct, becoming impractical to continue in the face of a flood of cheap U.S. imports. The rural farm is quickly losing its social and economic significance. This project, sited within the state of Zacatecas, Mexico, will involve the design of an organization and the implements it produces. Revising Ivan Illich's "convivial tool," these products would take advantage of efficiencies in methods of production and product delivery, enabling Zacatecans to live more autonomously, anticipating a resuscitation of vast areas of arable and domestic environments. Building upon programs that the Zacatecan government has already put in place to restore local public works, this project will propose alternatives to the existing system of interchange with the U.S. Architecture is examined as a process that employs resources---human, environmental, and material. I will attempt to design the management of certain resources that could plug into and interrupt existing systems.