Blank Generation is the recording of a keynote lecture by Bart Lootsma in The New institute in Rotterdam on March 8, 2018 in the context of the symposium Whatever Happened to History and Theory in Dutch Architecture? The lecture introduces the unique early work of ao. Gert Jan Willemse, Johan Kappetein, Wim van den Bergh and the author himself from the late nineteen eighties and positions it in the discourse on the autonomy of architecture as it was introduced by critics like Manfredo Tafuri and Geert Bekaert in that period. Lootsma demonstrates that on one hand the strive for autonomy produced remarkable results, but that this autonomy was only relative, as it was part of a much wider culture, provoked by the Years of Lead and Punk. The work literally had No Future and what happened to it might be taken as a warning in the context of the revival of the project of autonomy.
Image: Gert Jan Willemse, Finale. HNI, Rotterdam, PS_WILL_d37-b