Clara Maseda Juan
An open model that knits rural repopulation, the emerging political subject of “active-cultural pensioners” and academic situated learning practices.

Clara Maseda Juan
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain.
Team members
Clara Maseda Juan
Field of work
Architecture, Urban planning, Ecology, Research, Other
Project category
Rural spaces
Project submitted

Clara Maseda Juan is an “urban scenographer”, based between Madrid, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Naples. She holds a BA(Hons) Architecture and Planning from UWE (Bristol) and she recently completed a MA Programme in “Philosophy for contemporary challenges” at UOC (Barcelona) with her thesis "Desiring to find a “gap”". Her interest in understanding a craft dimension led her to experiment in her making with music, dance and lutherie. She rejects a specialist view of life, and she sees herself as a “generalist” mediator with artistic vocation and technical skills. She has worked with Spanish architecture and design collectives such as Basurama and Todoporlapraxis, and she has contributed to projects from MVRDV and Raumlabor Berlin as an architecture illustrator, which recently led her to found the illustration studio SPIRAKLO, where she addresses as a professional the question of political dimensions of architectural representation. She has also been mediator and guest artist in several workshops for universities and public administrations related with co-design and community interaction/integration. As a spatial practitioner, she commits to having a relational gaze on the membrane-gaps that dwell between the intimate and the collective as an act of eco-social responsibility.

I first thought about JÚBILO in 2019, the summer my 95-year-old grandfather broke his hip. With five children and a good pension, he spent his last two years surrounded by care and attention. But this event made me wonder: what kind of retirement will my parents' generation have? They statistically have had less children, more precarious pensions and increasing life expectancy, all while public health and social services are declining/being privatised. Plus, the pandemic has shown that current residential care models are not healthy ways of treating old age. Taking these accounts into my practice, I developed the idea of JÚBILO: its name means “joy”, the root of the Spanish word for “retirement”.
JÚBILO explores a sustainable model of self-care where the elderly are not seen as passive and isolated but rather recognised as active and empowered, interconnected with younger generations and the world. The project develops the notion of the "active-cultural pensioners", emerging political subjects whose emancipation process introduces a generous act of eco-social responsibility and existential fulfilment.
JÚBILO opens up a dialogue between the relational-habitational challenge of an inverted population pyramid and other issues, such as rural depopulation, or chances, such as the social potential of a situated learning turn of academic internships.
The JÚBILO open model engages with a practical reflection on gift economies, the collective management of common goods and the responsible “active-cultural tourism” idea. It combines intergenerational cohousing programmes, experimentation in cooperative governance and distributed-generative network organisation.
I presently work towards building JÚBILO pilot experiences through agreements with town councils to provide housing resources (the village), nearby universities to provide a flow of trainees (the itinerant population) and local communities/senior housing cooperatives to embody the project (the settled population).