The Vertical Geopolitics Lab (VGL) is an investigative practice and think-tank dedicated to exposing intangible systems and hidden agendas within the built environment.
Built objects of the everyday can be instrumentalized to convey subversive messages of power. Still, the prevailing conception is that power dynamics are shaped by and conducted through written policy documents and cartographic drawings. The work of the Vertical Geopolitics Lab seeks to recenter the study of how sovereignty is acquired and disputed as a practice-based matter of space and power in the built environment.
The lab’s motto claims that ‘to portray reality is a reality of its own’. Its vision aims to prevent the reality of representation from being missed for its representation of reality. Because to instill a debate on how something is being portrayed matters as much as what is being portrayed. The lab’s approach articulates design’s potential in the public realm as a medium of proactive problem-identifying. As such, it actively engages in advancing design’s capacity for identifying past, present, and future socio-political problems through its work across various media/formats of advocacy.
The projects section of this website is categorized into three subsections; input, output, and outlet. Input is to announce the lab’s collaborative calls or requests. Output is to showcase a sample work portfolio of the lab’s integrated practice, research, and teaching. Outlet is understood as a place via which the lab’s products are being distributed.