The Fundació Mies van der Rohe organises a series of debates and lectures entitled Coup de Dés that provide an opportunity to discuss some of the most significant architecture being produced today, with the objective of offering a wide panorama of current architectural practice. The debates are generated by the presentation of various projects. Each presentation is followed bu a dialogue between the architect and a critic who proposes an interpretation of the project and raises related questions. The Coup de Dés forms part of the GAUDI project sponsored by the Culture 2000 programme of the European Union.
Coup de Dés is the title of a series of seminars conceived as an opportunity to discuss the propositions that inform the architecture being built today. The intention is to depart from a series of completed works and to open up a debate on their significance.
Regarding the concept behind this series, Ignasi de Solà-Morales had established its defining principles before his premature death in 2001:
"The reference to the text by Mallarmé serves as our departure point. There is nothing pre-established. Not even plurality, hybridisation or multiplicity. Today’s architectural project is a risk, calculated or not, faced with an unlimited number of possibilities. Acuteness, ingenuity, astuteness or chance are the reference points of a reality that appears un-disciplined, disordered, un-leashed.
To pose the questions why does this happen, what is proposed and what is achieved is to attempt to understand the project: something artificially superimposed on reality to trap some kind of energy, a form, a trait.
To pro-ject is to launch a configuration, a hypothesis, convinced that it will be able to process lines, fractures, folds that concentrate peculiar energies existing in reality. To cross these lines, elaborate the conflict, to fashion these knots has always been the purpose of the project.”
The Coup de Dés seminar examines a group of contemporary works. Each work is the object of a presentation by its author, followed by a response delivered by a critic in the field of architecture or other disciplines who proposes an interpretation of the project and raises related questions of a more general nature.