The Wounded Brick, Cinema Moviemento, 22, Kottbusser Damm, Berlin, Tuesday 9th Arpil, 7:30 PM.
“The Wounded Brick” is a cinematic essay on the visions, hopes and failures while searching for humane housing in the face of economic and political interest. Filmmakers Sue-Alice Okukubo and Eduard Zorzenoni encounter architects, urban planners, sociologists and victims of the 2009 earthquake in Abruzzo, Italy.
Interviews with Vittorio Gregotti, Stefano Boeri, Lorenzo Romito, Vezio de Lucia, Friedrich von Borries, Hartmut Häussermann, Gottfried Böhm, Pauhof Architects, Harry Glück and citizens of L`Aquila merge associatively into a poetic reflection on: Who owns the city? What does housing mean?
Dear readers of this blog.
I don’t normally do this, but today I am reblogging a petition about democracy in my home country, Greece. I am very worried, not only because of the rise of the extreme (neo-Nazi) right, but also because its main tactics are increasingly incorporated into the mainstream. I would like to ask you to read the text carefully and if you agree, please go to the petition site and sign. Whether you are Greek or not, threats to democracy are threats to all of us.
Initiative for Democracy in Greece
A small group of us in London, Greeks of varied affiliations and political persuasions, have come together because we are very concerned about the rise of fascism, racism and the erosion of democracy and civil rights in Greece. Our aim is to raise awareness of the problem internationally, in the hope that this might help to put pressure on Greek politicians to address these issues. We have drafted a statement which we plan to send as an open letter to selected publications, initially in Britain but later also in Greece and the United States. We hope to collect as many signatures as we can from people with a personal or professional interest in Greece and/or human rights and civil liberties. We would be very grateful if you would sign the statement, if you feel you can do so, and also forward it to others who might be interested. Continue reading
by Markus Kather
This weekend Neukölln, one of Berlin’s most interesting districts for art and design, is showing off: Nacht und Nebel is a festival for local art and culture. In more than 100 locations Neukölln’s artists will present their work. At the NEMONA store near Hermannplatz, two young fashion designers present pieces that result from a collaboration with seniors in Helsinki. Continue reading
(De)placed Bodies in Public Space
by Hanna Lutz
I stop at red traffic lights. I walk on the sidewalk instead in the middle of the traffic. At night I choose the illuminated path instead of the dark one. I (usually) don’t enter “No trespassing” areas. And if I want to have a rest on a public square I will sit on a bench and probably not on the ground next to it – if I find a seating accommodation at all. If not, I will probably just skip my break. Walking around the city I definitely see myself being guided by architecture, design, existing (or missing) street furniture and signs in order to interact with the urban environment in a certain way. Without trying to discuss the wide range of positive and negative effects those “structuring elements” have on the use of and the behaviour within public space (not to mention trying to give a picture of cities that don’t have them), this Urban Hacking blog entry deals with a) different elements in the public space that structure the residents’ behaviour and b) Urban Hacks that consider them having negative influence on the qualities of public space and try to deny or converse them.
private vs. public
by Hanna Lutz
Public space is public space. I myself like to consider it as space not only accessible for the public (if this is ensured at all), but in the first place being made and maybe even protected by the public. In my last blog entry I already gave an overview about the predicted loss of public space as well as about Urban Hacks that sought to maintain (or almost fight for) its ideal forms. In this second article of my series I will give a selection of Hacks that are direct reactions to the privatisation of public space and will put the focus on the Urban Hackers’ ways to deal with these occurrences.
Logo of the project “Hacking the City” which took place on the occasion of the “European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010.”
by Hanna Lutz
The “end of public space” is proclaimed often. Urban researchers complain about increasing and omnipresent surveillance methods in as well as extensive privatization of public areas. The discussion about the decline in public space also focuses on the ubiquity of advertising messages in urban space and the so called “architecture of control” that subtly instructs urban residents’ behavior. Entering the aforementioned key words on google it brings up hundreds of books, papers, essays, articles, lectures, panel discussions etc. about the incorrect, contorted or ruined form of public space. Walking around several European or North American cities with a vigilant eye though, you can find a lot of interventions that face these tendencies creatively with direct actions: billboards turned to plant-holders, self-made zebra crossings and bike lanes, parking lots converted into picnic areas, … In this and future posts I want to give an overview about these direct actions, so called “Urban Hacks”, as a reaction to the loss of public space and show their value in terms of protecting its ideal forms.
Ethics for Sale? (Image from BrandChannel.com)
By Efe Sevin
Last year, the Journal of Place Branding and Public Diplomacy published a special issue on ethics of place branding, and I had the opportunity to put my two cents in with my article “Thinking about Place Branding: Ethics of Concept“. With recent encouragements from several colleagues, and the Turkish government’s most recent attempts to redesign national commemoration day celebrations, I decided to revisit some of the main arguments I made in the paper.
By Renard Teipelke
Traveling the world as an adventure (or a luxury) undertaken by young adults has become a well-known part of life of today’s younger generations. Multiple blogs are filled with online diaries, pictures, videos, links, and other pieces of information that are shared with friends and the world wide web for various reasons. Rick Mereki, Tim White, und Andrew Lees have been on a six-week travel around the world and made three short movies with impressions from the eleven countries they visited. Each movie has been framed by a specific theme, and they all highlight (indirectly) many aspects of traveling the world and understanding its heterogeneity and complexity – both, as I would say, with regard to leisure activities as well as research. Continue reading
Where is the happiest place in New York?
by Hans Pul
Where is the happiest place in New York? The above diagram maps “happiness” in the city based on the content of geotagged tweets. The diagram is structured according Manhattan’s grid, where red blocks represent “happy tweets”, while blueish blocks indicate a lower grade of happiness. It was created by researchers of the University of Vermont and is part of a fascinating post (read it, it makes you happy).
After the break I will introduce “Mappiness”, an iPhone app designed to collect data about how happy people are, taking into account their activities, the people they are with and the type of environment they’re in.