EMBASSY FOR THE NATIONS OF THE TROPICAL ANDES

BERLIN - BARCH HONOURS PROJECT - 2010

The richest and most diverse region on Earth, the Tropical Andes, comprises the countries of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia, nations which share a geological, geographical and historical solidarity. Since their independence from Spain in the 1820's their economic and political stability has been largely dependant on their exports into the global market of free trade, ironically placing them at the mercy of the dominant countries who buy their goods.

In terms of trade embassies play a crucial role in dealing not only with the export and import of goods but also with the cultural and educational exchange between nations. Currently in Berlin these countries meet on a regular basis to make decisions as a union, therefore having a stronger influence as a 'Collective Voice' of 'Individual Identities'.

In the period of its 'Critical Reconstruction' Berlin has become a hotspot for new embassies, and architecturally has become a suitable testing ground for the translation and representation of national identities in an international context.

In a world where globalisation obscures boundaries and ever growing mega cities are concentrated hubs of trade, can nations still be viable? Can identity be attached to one nation or is it an individual construction influenced by context and history? And finally can the union of nations and the collaboration between former colonies and empires work in creating hybrid identities that encompass more realistic values?