topic: love – intimacy and seduction in urban landscape

In our 2012 edition of the summer school we invited the Italian architect Flavio Albanese to propose a topic and take on the role of main editor. He suggested the topic “Love – Intimacy and Seduction in Urban Landscape”. Based on the observation that cities are places where love is made possible, we found that the city is not merely a rigid stage for love affairs, but it directly influences the emotional relationships of people, and is, in turn, shaped and organized according to their emotional actions. While nature was traditionally idealised as erotic, modernity has created erotic environments in the form of cities. Urban spaces carry with them myriad erotic currents that enable exchange across economic and cultural boundaries. With the rise of the so-called ‘Generic City’, however, erotic currents are more and more characterized by clean and flexible exchange mechanisms. Is it still possible to talk about love in contemporary urban landscape? And if so, what kind of love can we find there?



20 young, international designers created and edited the publication “Love – Intimacy and Seduction in Urban Landscape” in the framework of onlab’s second Summer School. Divided into seven groups, each team developed a thematic chapter within ten days.

With: Kim Andenmatten (Switzerland), Alicia Cristo Anzola (Venezuela), Elisabeth Aster (Italy), Idil Atesli (Turkey), Jessica Chablais (Switzerland), Nathalia Cury (Brazil), Dorottya Döme (Hungary), Chantal Durante (Switzerland), Markus Ewald (Germany), Viviane Jalil (Switzerland), Amanda-Li Kollberg (Denmark), Tabea Kraus (Germany), Jolin Masson (Canada), Homer Mendoza (Canada), Jessica Miller (USA), Raed Al-Fateh Moussa (Canada), Nadya Petrova (Russia), Jasio Stefanski (USA), Diana Szentgyörgyi (Hungary), Beyza Uçak (Turkey).

















Milo Keller, director of photography at the écal (Lausanne), joined us as an expert on photography, Emmanuel Rey and Ian Party from the legendary foundry swiss typefaces presented their impressive body of work, Chiara Medioli, specialist at the paper manufacturer Fedrigoni, introduced us to the world of fibers, opacity, weights, coating and texture, and last but not least Robert Strack from Europrint guided us through the production chain and explained every step from data processing to the finished product.

public conference

As a platform for discussion, we organised a public conference where Beatrice Galilee, a London-based curator, writer, critic, consultant and lecturer of contemporary architecture and design, and Milo Keller, Lausanne/Paris-based director of photography at the écal, presented their views on the implications of love and intimacy for cultural work in general and editorial design in particular.

In her cultural work, Beatrice Galilee deals with the question of how to create spaces that can enable an intimate and personal experience in otherwise anonymous and generic urban landscapes. She presented stunning examples of public installations that she commissioned, and shared her observations on ‘Love, The Psyche and the Street’. Developing an intuition for spaces is the foundation of her work. Intuition also forms the basis of Milo Keller’s work when it comes to portraying people and buildings. Showing a selection of impressive photographs, he spoke about the intimate relationship between object, camera and photographer.


The publication consists of seven chapters packed in cellophane. Divided into seven groups, each team developed a thematic chapter and designed a stamp for the cellophane which interacts with the main cover. Printed in two colors, green and pink, the publication is given a consistent look even though every chapter follows a different design approach.

Check the full documentation of the publication on the onlab webpage >


    Check the full day by day documentation of the Summer School 2012 on the onlab webpage >