Producing Publics: Architecture, Agency, and Social Space Symposium

Coordinated by History of Architecture and Urban Development (HAUD) graduate students, this symposium examines relationships between historic conceptions of the public and the production of the built environment. Concerns for various public and counter-public spheres have been integral to the development of architectural, landscape architecture, and planning professions. All of these fields have both responded to existing ideas of the public and generated new ones. As public debates increasingly take place in abstract rather than physical spaces, the question of architecture’s role in producing, defending, and defining the public sphere is an important one. How have public spaces historically reflected or redefined the concept of public in different places and periods? Who designs public spaces, and who uses them? In what ways have public uses been at odds with the intentions of designers?

This two-day event opens on Friday, October 14, with a keynote lecture by Iain Borden, professor of architecture and urban culture and vice dean for communications for the Faculty of the Built Environment at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. Bordenʼs talk, entitled "From Skateboards to Automobiles: Producing Social Space at Speed,” will combine his well-known studies of skateboarding with new research. His lecture will be followed by a full day of sessions on Saturday, October 15. In each session student presenters from an international range of graduate programs will present original research, and invited faculty respondents will offer response and feedback.

9–11 a.m. Constructing Public Narrative

Maria S. Giudici (Ph.D. candidate, “The City as a Project” Program, The Berlage Institute)
Specific Spaces: Architecture dʼAccompagnement and the Construction of the Public Sphere in the Age of Government

Mark Clintberg (Ph.D. candidate, Department of Art History, Concordia University)
A Confectionary Architecture: Antonin Carêmeʼs Edible Follies and his Proposal for Public Space

Alexander Phillips (graduate student, Department of German Studies, Cornell University)
Producing German National Spaces: Three Literary Moments, 1848–1900

Jonathan Puff (Ph.D. candidate, Architectural History, University of Michigan)
The Public and the Ambiguous Colossus: Norris Dam as Architectural Mass Media

11:15 a.m.–12:45 p.m. Civic Complexes: Official Ideals for Community Life
Nathaniel Walker (Ph.D. candidate, History of Art & Architecture, Brown University)
Factories for Living: A Utopian Response to Industrial Revolution, 1830–1850

Torsten Lange (Ph.D. candidate, Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL)
A Built Environment for Socialist Life: the Concept of Komplexe Umweltgestaltung

Joy Knoblauch (Ph.D. candidate, History, Theory, and Criticism of Architecture, Princeton)
Public Knowledge: The Story of Defensible Space as a Product of Public Science (1964–74)

Response by Susanne Cowan (assistant professor, School of Architecture, Syracuse University)

1:45–3:15 p.m. Revealing Thresholds: Spaces between Public and Private

Alexandra Logue (Ph.D. candidate, University of Toronto)
“Private Business” in Public Space: Reconsidering Early Modern London Homes

Laura Walikainen (Ph.D. candidate, History of American Civilization, University of Delaware)
Private Spaces in Public Places: Public Comfort Stations at the Turn of the 20th Century 

Margot Lystra (M.A./Ph.D. candidate, HAUD, Cornell University)
Enacting the Edge: Dancing on Sidewalks Dot-com San Francisco

Response by Mary N. Woods (Michael A. McCarthy Professor of Architectural History, Department of Architecture, Cornell University)

3:30–5:30 p.m. Pluralism and Taking Part in Urban Transformation
Andreas Kalpacki (M.E.D. candidate, Yale School of Architecture)
Paul Otlet: The City as Instrument of Cosmopolitan Consciousness

Angela Starita (Ph.D. candidate, History of Architecture, New Jersey Institute of Technology)

Urban Architecture: Lina Bo Bardi's Plans for the Restoration of the Historic Center of Salvador, Brazil

Edith Fikes (M.A./Ph.D. candidate, HAUD, Cornell University)
To What Effect? Sarajevo and the Art of Uncertainty

Zoran Poposki (Ph.D. candidate, Philosophy and Gender Studies, EuroBalkan Institute)
Space of Power: Representation and Agency in Public Space through Art and Activism

Response by Iain Borden (Professor of Architecture and Urban Culture, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL)

Sponsored by the Department of Architecture and the College of Architecture, Art and Planning, with contributions from the History of Architecture and Urban Development program, GPSAFC, the Departments of History, German Studies, and Urban Planning, and the Telluride House
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