Existenz is an organization managed by future architects in the of the master Civil Engineering-Architects at the university KULeuven, Belgium. Existenz aims to be a platform were architecture can be inviting and accessible to everyone.The name is a reference to the ‘Existenzminimum’ dwellings of modernism, where maximum functionality was achieved with a minimum of resources and space.
The Existenzteam endeavors the same concept, where it wants to obtain the maximum of quality with a minimum of resources. Various activities touching architecture are organized to develop a different perspective and experience. But Existenz is more than just architecture, it is a ‘way of life’, a playground to let creativity flow in all aspects. It is an opportunity to connect with different nationalities and universities to discover each others work.
It is an invitation to other disciplines to stimulate an enriching interaction between art and architecture. After more than 2 decades, Existenz has become a household name in Leuven, not only thanks to the Existenzweek, but also thanks to the so called Bauhouse-parties, the‘Cafés’, lectures and cooperation with ‘Stad en Architectuur’ and last but not least to various publications.
The highlight of Existenz is the annual project week. During this week, everyone is invited to come to a unique location that is restored in a characteristic and creative way. Organizing the Existenzweek asks each year for a special and unique location in Leuven. An abandoned building is restored in an uncommon way. It seeks to bring the building back to life and unlock the potential energy that was hidden.
All sorts of activities, linked to architecture in the broadest sense of the word, are organized. Both architecture and non-architecture students can enjoy themselves in several creative workshops and participate at interesting lectures. There is a variety of atmospheres, where socializing and creativity are merged. The week is also about creating an environment where everyone can and wants to be continuously present, a place where one can work, enjoy or simply do nothing..