Infinite But Tiny

Towards a Hybrid Architecture of Dwelling


  • Georgios Eftaxiopoulos Aarhus School of Architecture / Architectural Association School of Architecture
  • María Álvarez García Leeds Beckett University / Architectural Association School of Architecture / Aarhus School of Architecture



In the midst of a new Covid-19 variant—Omega—in winter 2021, the recently rebranded tech giant Meta announced the company’s vision for the metaverse: a ‘beyond universe’ of constant connection. Only a few days later, the Swedish furniture giant IKEA shared its latest version of the project Tiny Homes: an extremely condensed and cheap micro-apartment in Tokyo's district of Shinjuku. This paper scrutinises these two events and discusses the progressive upscaling of the digital dwelling and the parallel downsizing of the physical one. It argues that beyond a deadly epidemic, Covid-19 managed to upend, overnight, not only the traditional living and working practices, but also the spaces that both determine and are determined by them. It canonised a flexible life by envisioning a new architecture of hybrid dwelling where people could shift in real-time from their tiny physical spaces into an infinite digital one. Yet, this opportunity granted by the immersive, allegedly inclusive and democratic new virtual realm hides a strangely familiar set of relations. It facilitates the establishment of a new and broader economy of continuous worldwide accumulation in which constant connectedness, creation and production construct a highly ephemeral and economised hybrid space that redefines the traditional understanding of dwelling.

Author Biographies

Georgios Eftaxiopoulos, Aarhus School of Architecture / Architectural Association School of Architecture

Georgios Eftaxiopoulos (BArch(Hons), AADipl, AAPhD) is an architect, Teaching Assistant Professor at Aarhus School of Architecture and Course Tutor at the Architectural Association. He has previously practised in Belgium and Switzerland and taught at The Berlage, the University of Navarra and the Royal College of Art.

María Álvarez García, Leeds Beckett University / Architectural Association School of Architecture / Aarhus School of Architecture

María Álvarez García is a registered architect, writer and educator. She holds a PhD, MArch and BArch from the University of Navarra and a MA in History & Critical Thinking from the Architectural Association. María is a Lecturer at Leeds Beckett University and currently also teaches at the Architectural Association and Aarhus School of Architecture. Her work and texts have been published in books, international journals, and online platforms. María’s publications have been translated into Italian and Portuguese.


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