Nutopia workshop w/ Jennie Savage
August 15th, 2009@ Volume, 3pm
As cities become architecturally homogenised, “Nutopia” will ask, “What and where are our new Utopias?”
“Nutopia” follows a symposium of the same name organised by Jennie Savage as part of her project “The Arcades Project: A 3D Documentary” (www.arcadesproject.org). This workshop/ event proposes to develop and extend her investigation referencing ideas raised during the symposium and inviting people to work together collectively in a workshop style format to ask; what could be the “Utopia’s” of the 21c, how do we find them in architectural environments and potentially to critique the very idea of Utopian dreaming and suggest alternative terms or references.
The event will invite people to explore and question the idea that city centres are constructed as spaces of consumption and designed as areas with potential for economic growth; the redevelopment and ownership of cities by global corporations; the language of regeneration – place as a perceptual landscape informed by linguistic architecture; tensions between resistance and commodification and the possibility to reclaim cities and make visible non-economic exchange as a valuable part of our lives and communities.
During the event we will try to bring together, suggest and develop ideas and practices which may help to reclaim these spaces as human places.
Jennie Savage is an artist whose work explores the places between public spaces, town planning, constructed landscapes and the human story; the lived lives and personal narratives connected to those sites. Working through a process that uses archiving and intervention she seeks to map the other life of a place or community in order to reveal a complex situation, a micro- structure or simply document an unheard voice. She has worked extensively in the UK and internationally.
Cities in Crisis
Institute of Contemporary Art, London
15 July 2009
British cities have never been so cool: buzzing with cultural centres, farmers’ markets and late-night venues. Regeneration and loft-living have transformed seedy neighbourhoods into desirable urban villages. Yet media reports of stabbings and MPs needing personal security have fuelled anxiety about crime. The property boom forced prices beyond the reach of first-time buyers – a situation the current credit crunch has done little to assuage. Property developers and private interests are expanding their territories, with corporate plazas replacing public spaces. If we are to live in cities in the 21st century, what can be done to improve our relationships with them?
Speakers: Anna Minton, author of Ground Control: Fear and Happiness in the Twenty-first-century City; Nigel Coates, professor of architecture at the Royal College of Art; councillor Daniel Moylan, deputy leader of Kensington and Chelsea Council and deputy chair of Transport for London; Liz Peace, chief executive at the British Property Foundation. Chair: Tristram Hunt, author of Building Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Victorian City and lecturer in urban history at Queen Mary, University of London.
2/3 April 2009 @ Cardiff, UK
“Nutopia: Exploring the Metropolitan Imagination is a mapping process which seeks to explore the possibility of re- imaging utopia in relation to ‘the city’. The ways in which we can challenge the idea that city centres are purely spaces of consumption; look at possibilities for non-economic exchange; examine tensions between resistance and commodification and look at how this impacts our personal lives; the possibility to reinvent our cities, to reclaim; to consider the redevelopment and ownership of cities in the face of privatization; city architecture ~ Cathedrals to commerce; the language of regeneration, place as a perceptual landscape informed by a linguistic architecture.“
submitted by Jennie Savage
World-Information City / Paris
Urban In/visibility, Access and Zoning
Conference: 30/31 May 2009
Speaker: John Urry
from Centre for Mobilities Research, Lancaster University
“This paper examines a range of future possible scenarios as to the character, scale and significance of mobility patterns. These scenarios are examined within an emerging era which may well be characterized by dramatic climate change, the peaking of oil supplies and potential tipping points. The paper will address the question as to whether the period of high and growing mobility especially during the C20th was actually only a brief interlude in the longer term processes of human history.”
photos submitted by: Nicolas Sauret
US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive
By Tom Leonard in Flint, Michigan
Published: 6:30PM BST 12 Jun 2009
“Dozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic “shrink to survive” proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline.”