The Woman Builds. ‘Architecture Na Periphery’

  • Álvarez Domínguez Mónica EnriquetaUniversidad Politécnica de Madrid, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura
  • Angelique TrachanaUniversidad Politécnica de Madrid, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura
Abstract

Participation for the intervention and transformation of the environment, in the case study Arquitectura Na Periferia”, is presented as an emancipatory way for women and to mitigate conflicts of different kinds in marginalized settlements.
This article studies the broader consequences of citizen participation and collaboration in practices that break the usual operational schemes of the architectural and urban discipline.
In this way, it is intended to carry out, at the same time, an evaluation of some renewed professional practices, reviewing the attitudes and action procedures and demonstrating the efficiency of the processes in which the people and communities involved grow and transform.

DOI: 

https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.7.01

Searching for the center. First part

  • Remesar Antoni Universitat de Barcelona
Abstract

This article, the first part of a series, reviews the idea of the ‘center’ of the city through an analysis of some utopian proposals, including Howard’s for the garden city and ends with an analysis of the polycentrality of the medieval city.

After a review of the evolution of circular and polygonal cities from an analysis of secondary
sources, artistic iconography, cartography of the early days of printing and images of Google Earth, introduces the discussion about the ‘ideal city by studying this concept in medieval scholasticism, especially in the work of Eiximenis, as well as the relationship of this ideal with the materialization of the medieval cities [1] of repopulation, valuing the relationship between the routes and the emergence of the urban center and [2] the study, with different
intensities, of important medieval cities: Siena, Bologna, Florence, Venice, Brussels, Krakow,
Naples and Barcelona.

In the case of these last two cities, the article focuses on the importance of the port and shore space, as a large public space in the city.

DOI: 

https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.8.01

					View Vol. 63 No. 9 (2021): The icons and the city

Aesthetic Uniqueness of Public Space. Based on the Example of the Region of Łódź(Poland) Basic Terminological Issues

Jowita Mróz Doctoral School of Humanities. University of Łódź

ABSTRACT

The concept of uniqueness can be an important critical tool. But as related to architecture, buildings, or the entire architectural and visual landscape of the city it appears frequently in many different contexts.
One can state that describing objects in public space and even entire urban complexes in terms of uniqueness plays a marketing role – it increases the tourist attractiveness of the area – as well as socio-cultural role, because it helps to strengthen the city and build its community’s sense of identity. Indicating these goals or the intention to create uniqueness in the region of Łódź draws attention to another, more fundamental theoretical-linguistic issue, namely, what it means that something is unique.
Taking into account etymology, theoretical approach, as well as possible values attributed to ‛uniqueness,’ I will consider main terminological problems with the notion. Bearing in mind these basic theoretical-linguistic issues, I will consider whether there are unique objects in the city of Łódź and the region.
Trying to answer this question I will review phenomena and objects that could be considered as unique. Identifying possible uniqueness of the places and objects located in public spaces of the region of Łódź, I will consider what can create a unique panorama of urban space in Łódź and its region, and on what scale this uniqueness can be considered in order to avoid the feeling that in some sense everything is unique, or nothing is, because it imitates or resembles existing solutions, ideas in other cities of Poland or Europe.

DOI: 

https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.9.01


The image of contemporary architecture of Wrocław depicted in recent tourist commercial and Internet media

Natalia Bursiewicz Pedagogical University of Krakow

ABSTRACT

The aim of the paper is to present the tourist and image potential of contemporary public architecture.
Wrocław was chosen as the research subject, as it is a historical center with an extremely rich architectural heritage, which has enjoyed great interest among visitors for centuries. With the announcement of Wrocław as the European Capital of Culture 2016, and then the European Best Destination in 2018, its attractiveness increased significantly, which was reflected not only in the number of visitors, but also in the advertising materials themselves.
Both before and after arrival, millions of tourists encounter a multitude of various advertising forms, both virtual and printed, which determine the direction of sightseeing and shape a specific image and perception of the city. In general opinion, Wrocław is considered a historic city, the most interesting places of which are concentrated around the Old Town and Ostrów Tumski. The Centennial Hall, built at the beginning of the 20th century, stands out from the „newer heritage”.
The idea of the study, however, was to answer the question whether contemporary architecture is used in any way in the current tourist advertisement of the city. Another goal was to identify and list the most frequently appearing objects from the adopted group, and to analyze the manner of their presentation. Based on the collected materials, efforts were made to assess the role of the media in creating a tourist product in terms of promoting local architecture in recent years.
At the same time, an attempt was made to evaluate the role of architecture in creating the city’s progressive brand. In the research, the author used the method of analyzing the existing statistical data, iconographic research and the method of analyzing the content of advertising materials, as well as scientific studies on cultural heritage and tourism in the city. The final part of the paper shows that modern architecture can be a significant element increasing the tourist attractiveness of the city.

DOI: 

https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.9.02

Rosa Vives awarded the Céan Bermúdez 2021 prize for engraving

Organized by the Society of Friends of Drawing and Engraving with the support of the San Fernando’s Royal Academy of Fine Arts, have made public the awards for the 2021 edition. Among the winners, our colleague, Professor Rosa Vives.

The Ceán Bermúdez Award for the Arts of Drawing, Engraving and Illustrated Book distinguishes individuals and corporations, institutions, legal persons, organizations or public or private entities that have excelled in the field of artistic and cultural creation or have lent Notorious services in the promotion, development, trade, collecting or dissemination of the arts of drawing, printing and illustrated books.

JUAN AGUSTÍN CEÁN BERMÚDEZ (Gijón 1749 – Madrid 1829) He was the prototype of the illustrated scholar, a fundamental character for the history of Spanish art, a kind of catalyst for very diverse aspects in this field such as historiography, art criticism, collecting, the history of painting, of architecture. and Spanish sculpture, and also engraving. Not only did he maintain a close relationship with Goya and other artists of the time, but he was also a fundamental piece in the circle of politicians and intellectuals such as Jovellanos, Iriarte, Moratín, Vargas Ponce and many others who tried to regenerate the country through the education, culture, economics or politics.

The awards ceremony will be on October 1, Friday, at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando (Madrid).

Emerging practices in public space projects: the case of via Argentina in Panama City

By José Antonio De Gracia DOI: https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.6.01

Cover Page

Abstract

This article uses an urban intervention in Panama City to discuss fundamental concepts in public space projects from a critical and theoretical perspective.


First, the functions of the street as a basic structure of public space are illustrated. Its importance is recognized not only as an element of urban connectivity, but also as a place of movement, encounter, support and creation of urban meanings and social identities.


Secondly, our case study is contextualized: the urban renewal of via Argentina, a street in the urban center whose environment was in a state of degradation like most streets in the city, largely occupied by the presence of vehicles. The intervention is part of a series of urban projects aimed at improving the physical structure of the city.
The third section begins a critical analysis of the actions on Via Argentina, starting with the redistribution of street space, the relationship between vehicles and pedestrians, and the consolidation of public space.


Next, we discuss in detail the new primary elements used for the urbanization of the street. Curbs, fords, pavement, rigola, gutters, tree surrounds and bollards become part of a system that must maintain a coherent relationship between all its parts. In addition, emphasis is placed on the design of the ground and the application of the pavement as a tool for the construction of an urban image and identity.
Finally, the article ends with an analysis of the parameters of accessibility in the project, relating the concept to the use of the pavement and the configuration in some sections of the street as a single platform. The article uses a wide repertoire of documentary photography to contextualize the case study.

Keywords

Urban design; Public space; Pavement; Universal accessibility; Single platform; Via Argentina; Panama City.

From Densely Filled Vistas to Empty Piazzas. City Images Interpreting the Oscillating Dynamisms of Urban Reality

By -Zoltán Somhegyi DOI: https://doi.org/10.1344/waterfront2021.63.4.01


Cover Page

Abstract

Cities have been inspirational for the creators of visual art works long since, first as mere secondary, additional motifs to indicate the “urban” environment of the main scene, then as subject-matters in their own right. Those images could depict both imaginary and actual cities of the past and of the future, including mythological and Biblical locations, documenting distant lands and fantasizing on the appearance of utopian cities. In some of these aspects, the history of city representations shares significant similarities with the history of landscape depictions. 


In the present paper, however, I aim to focus on a curious and particular detail in this pictorial tradition. Following and further investigating a brief reflection by Michel Makarius from his 2004 book on Ruins, I would like to compare the visuality and aesthetic effects of dense and empty cityscapes, of which two classical examples could be the capriccios – imaginary views of cities completely filled with aesthetically pleasing elements, including magnificent remnants of the Antique heritage – and representations of cities in which their emptiness is highlighted to such extent that the observer tends to assume that the real subject-matter of the image is not the city, its buildings, forms and physical components but exactly its being “empty”. 


These “extremities” on the broad range of cityscapes, i.e., the densely-filled and the extremely depopulated are, however, not merely historical sub-genres of long-gone centuries. These typologies have survived to this day, in various versions and with diverse accents; what’s more, they seem to be more relevant than ever in understanding not only the nature of these artistic representations and their aesthetic references, but also in learning more of our contemporary reality itself. It is enough to think of the numerous ways in which artists approach the convoluted issues and challenges of urban life today, with the classical references and visual vocabulary in mind, either unconsciously creating occasional parallels or using them as explicit forerunners to their own works. The density of the global megapolises are represented in artistically novel ways often with socially critical overtones, while the images of empty cities – not long ago, for example, during the recent pandemics and lockdowns – are again resulting in aesthetically inspiring and insightful works incentivizing us to reflect on the oscillating dynamisms of our present urban realities. Therefore, it is particularly beneficial to observe such renderings of our cities and hence to raise more our awareness of the multiple global issues that are often very strongly manifested in the everyday life in large metropolises. Pieces of art thematising the extreme forms of city life can become very efficient ways of constantly reminding us of our duties of taking care of both our cities and our life.

Keywords

representations of cities; dense cityscapes; empty cities; aesthetics of urbanity

What are the monuments for?

Journal of a gadabout 16 by Dr. A. Remesar

Lefebvre (Lefebvre, Henry, 1973) pointed out the contradictions inherent to the monument. He defends it insofar as it “projects on the ground a worldview and a transcendence, a beyond“; but he rejects it because when it “organizes a space, colonizes and oppresses its surroundings”, (… and) “full of symbols it offers them for contemplation (passive) and social conscience when they are out of date and have lost their meaning“. Continue reading What are the monuments for?

“Mataró Ideal City” by Jordi Henrich, wins the contest for Centre Development Strategic Plan

Ending 2017 the Mataro`s City Council launched a contest in order to draw a  strategic plan for the centre of the city.

“The aim of the Ideas Contest is to design a strategy and a model that includes economy, urban development, architecture, mobility and economic, cultural and social development in its actions to allow the city centre to be put forward as a motor of cultural activity, of trade and tourism within a single discourse that revalues its legacy of history and heritage.
The selected proposal will become the strategic instrument to develop the Mataró Centre Development Strategic Plan”. Continue reading “Mataró Ideal City” by Jordi Henrich, wins the contest for Centre Development Strategic Plan

Where the city changes its name. New ideas for the public space in the Bon Pastor neighbourhood

This series, titled as the novel by Francesc Candel (1957), desires to help to build up an account of the many experiences of neighbours in order to improve their living conditions, giving visibility to the work on memory retrieval developed in many neighbourhoods and recover the spirit of belonging, solidarity, dignity and struggle.

Thursday, November 29, at 7:00 pm, at the Bon Pastor Library.

Organized by: Bon Pastor Library, Polis Research Center (UB) – Master Urban Design (UB) Continue reading Where the city changes its name. New ideas for the public space in the Bon Pastor neighbourhood

Public space: the use of vertical and air planes

Journal of a Gadabout (14) by Dr. A. Remesar

The public space is structured in four planes: that of the ground, the vertical (not exclusively of facade); the plane of the air and a fourth plane that can be called zenital. The most studied is the horizontal plane, built from infrastructures, elements of urban service (lighting, vegetation, signage, etc.) and interfacing with urban systems (water, electricity, gas, etc.), with the omnipresent elements of paving. (see)

The study of the vertical plane is reduced to the analysis of the facades, although the vertical containment of public space goes beyond the facades. (see)

Continue reading Public space: the use of vertical and air planes