Urban Studies

I`m currently participating in the international ThinkTank – Ideal City of the 21st Century, which is organized by the Leuphana University in Germany. Teachers are Saskia Sassen, Scott Lash, Daniel Libeskind, Beate Sontgens, Timon Beyes, Bart Brands, Avner de-Shalit, Gerd Folkers, John Beard, among others.

“The Leuphana ThinkTank is Leuphana Digital School´s pilot project. Led by architect and Leuphana professor Daniel Libeskind, the ThinkTank sets out to provide a completely new kind of learning experience. Designed as a cost- and barrier-free academic course for collaborative web-based learning, it gives you the chance to team up with participants from across the world. Thus, the ThinkTank invites you to creatively interact with peers and scholars alike. Any interested global citizen can join and work on an ‘Ideal City of the 21st Century’ – not by sitting in on long lectures, but by actively participating and exploring the platform. Our team of lecturers – leading scholars and world-renowned experts – guides you on your journey.

Participants of ‘ThinkTank – Ideal City of the 21st Century’ formulate their version of an ideal city by completing six consecutive assignments in their team:

1 – Significant Detail: Your Personal View on Today’s Cities Every look into the future starts with understanding the present. Within your daily lives you come across many different characteristics of city life, from distinctive and eye-catching to urban decay, from functional and sustainable to inefficient and impractical. In your first assignment, we ask you to hand in photographs of details in your current home city that are definitive to the city and matter to you personally – for good or bad. Your team is asked to describe each picture in a short and concise paragraph. Why is the element you have chosen representative for that city or cities in general? Why and how does it matter to you personally?
End product: self-shot photos, text
2 – Planned Cities: Learning from the Past Understanding the thoughts of others, as well as their physical results, will help you to create your own vision of a city. In this assignment we ask you to compare several historic planned cities that tried to find answers to prevalent challenges of their time. To guide you through this process, we provide you with a framework of leading questions – all regarding the focus of this assignment: what makes a city?
End product: systematic comparison
3 – Vision for Society: Setting the Stage This assignment is about your own governing thoughts for the prospective society surrounding your city. What are its constitutive principles – what is the role of Government and of the Citizen, the role of the Market, what are the mobility requirements, what is the framework for its sustainability?
End product: short text
4 – The List: Elements of the City, and how they work This assignment is about the functional elements of your city. Taking into account your vision for society at large, what exactly will be needed for your city? For example, a University, Schools, Hospitals, Theaters, Public Transport, City Hall, Religious Buildings – and how many of each? How will each of these projects be financed? Now is the time to decode your vision and your principles and to describe your city in terms of real functions and key elements.
End product: list
5 – Interaction in the City: A Conceptual Map Now it’s time to visualize your city´s layout in a conceptual map. This step is all about a strong visualization of your spatial concept so that others can easily perceive it. In addition, we ask you to explain your concept in concrete terms: How do the particular elements of your city relate to each other spatially, how do they interact? What are the core use cases of the inhabitants of your city, and how will they be implemented?
End product: conceptual map, supplemented by text
6 – Your City: The Visualization Now you need to distill all your prior thoughts and ideas and move on to implementation. You should first choose situations – significant details – that describe fundamental aspects of your city and that have the potential to be represented in powerful and stirring images. You may want to create visuals that show different aspects of your city and real life situations of its inhabitants. A general overview, innovative ideas as well as the social life in your future city are to be part of your imagery. You probably want to point to what people feel when walking through the city you have designed, what they will hear, or touch.
End product: visualizations (renderings, drawings, model photos), supplemented by text” (-Press release)

STEP 2025

Im Rahmen des Wiener Stadtentwicklungsplans STEP 2025 finden thematische Future Talks statt, um die Aufgaben und Möglichkeiten der Stadtentwicklung zu diskutieren. Das Know-how und die Erfahrung von BürgerInnen und möglichst vielen Akteuren aus Wirtschaft, Zivilgesellschaft, Planung, Politik und Verwaltung sollen in den STEP-Erstellungsprozess einfließen und die Entwicklung der Stadt breit diskutiert werden.
Thema des heutigen Future Talks ist „KulturStadt – StadtKultur – Stadtentwicklungskultur” und ich werde mit ca. 20 weiteren,  von der amtierenden Wiener Vizebürgermeisterin Maria Vassilakou geladenen, ExpertInnen aus den Bereichen Stadtplanung, Urbanismus & Kultur Vorschläge zum Thema entwickeln.

Urban Studies

I`m currently participating in the international ThinkTank – Ideal City of the 21st Century, which is organized by the Leuphana University in Germany. Teachers are Saskia Sassen, Scott Lash, Daniel Libeskind, Beate Sontgens, Timon Beyes, Bart Brands, Avner de-Shalit, Gerd Folkers, John Beard, among others.

“The Leuphana ThinkTank is Leuphana Digital School´s pilot project. Led by architect and Leuphana professor Daniel Libeskind, the ThinkTank sets out to provide a completely new kind of learning experience. Designed as a cost- and barrier-free academic course for collaborative web-based learning, it gives you the chance to team up with participants from across the world. Thus, the ThinkTank invites you to creatively interact with peers and scholars alike. Any interested global citizen can join and work on an ‘Ideal City of the 21st Century’ – not by sitting in on long lectures, but by actively participating and exploring the platform. Our team of lecturers – leading scholars and world-renowned experts – guides you on your journey.

Participants of ‘ThinkTank – Ideal City of the 21st Century’ formulate their version of an ideal city by completing six consecutive assignments in their team:

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EIN.KÜCHEN.BAU – ein Gespräch zwischen Architekturtheorie, Feminismus und Ikea

Leistbar, funktional und arbeitsfreundlich sollte sie sein, die Küche – der Traum einer jeden Hausfrau, zumindest in den goldenen 20er Jahren. Genau das realisierte die Architektin Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky in den zwanziger Jahren mit ihrem Entwurf Frankfurter Küche, bis zur Perfektion brachte sie möglichst viele Funktionen auf wenig Platz unter.

Nun untersucht der Künstler Joonas Lahtinen mit der Performance EIN.KÜCHEN.BAU. den normierten Raum im Allgemeinen und das Konzept der Einbauküche nach Schütte-Lihotzky im Besonderen auf seinen Aktualitätsgehalt.
“Räume wirken bewusst und unterbewusst ständig auf das Leben der Menschen ein, diese können der Architektur nicht entrinnen,” spricht Lahtinen während der Performance durch ein Megaphon. Es ist ein Originalzitat Schütte-Lihotzkys, mit dem Die BesucherInnen hier konfrontiert werden. Und dies Aussage ist nicht minder aktuell als vor gut 90 Jahren. [MORE]

Virginia Nimarkoh: Utopian Public Spaces & Class Distinctions


Green spaces, such as urban gardens or farms, are in the focus of the current discussion about urban spaces. Virginia Nimarkoh`s photographs document municipal green spaces like parks, community gardens and city farms, which are the meeting point for diverse narratives around community, nature, ownership and the city. In an interview she tells us about her interest in (green) public spaces, class distinctions and her affection for The Phoenix Garden in London. [MORE]

The Plant Journal


Two years ago, three editors started to work out the fabulous idea of The Plant Journal. Besides providing botanical contents in a simple, personal and cozy way, The Plant Journal offers a new view on greenery on a bi-annual basis. The first issue was launched in June 2011 and its initiators Isabel Merino, Carol Montpart and Cristina Merino are still on the go – issue #3 will be in stores in September 2012. Christina Merino, editor-in-chief, took some time to let us know, what makes up the passion behind. [MORE]

Conference: Aesthetic Politics

Der Fachbereich für Moden und Styles der Akademie der Bildenden Künste Wien veranstaltet am 12. und 13. Oktober 2012 ein internationales Symposium mit dem Titel Aesthetic Politics in Fashion. Positionen zwischen Mode, Kunst und Design.
Am Freitag, den 12. Oktober 2012 bin ich als Chair zum Panel The Producton of Space eingeladen, welches die Rolle von Wirtschaft, Macht und Stadt im künstlerischen Umfeld diskutieren wird. “[...] Das Panel Production of Space führt die Frage nach den Machtbeziehungen, Blick- und Präsentationsregimen der Mode weiter. Dazu hinterfragen Lisbeth Freiss, Tanja Bradaric, Sabina Muriale und Carmen Rüter die hierarchischen Strukturen zwischen etablierten Modezentren und marginalisierten Modestädten sowie zwischen Luxuslabels und unabhängigen ModedesignerInnen. [...]”
Das vollständige Programm mit Informationen zu allen Panels, der Podiumsdiskussion am Freitagabend, dem Workshop am Samstag sowie den Vortragenden findet sich hier zum Download: Aesthetic Politics in Fashion.

DESIGN-INSIGHTS.BY

For the series of experts-interviews on the the very new platform DESIGN-INSIGHTS.BY, I`ve recently answered some questions concerning urban trends like vintage and DIY and the representation of cultural identity through clothing in global cities. Get some design insights, available in German and English, over here

Lucia Glass: Movement and Clothing


Die Choreographin Lucia Glass vereint in ihrer Performance Sensation Avantgarde-Mode und Bewegung. Wie die Vorbereitungen zu ihrer getanzten Modenschau verliefen und was Bewegungen mit dem Faltenwurf zu tun haben, verrät sie mir in einem Interview. Nachzulesen sowohl auf TRANZIT PAPER (Erstveröffentlichung) als auch auf der Seite vom Museumsquartier Wien / SOF.

Retro – von der Patina der Gegenwart

Für die ORF/ OE1-Sendung Diagonal-Radio für Zeitgenoss/innen zum Thema: Retro – von der Patina der Gegenwart (Sendetermin am 30.06.2012 um 17:05h) hat mich Ines Mitterer zum Retro-Trend befragt. Worum es außerdem geht, lässt sich hier nachlesen. Und wer nun neugierig geworden ist, schalte das Radio ein!

Frauen brauchen Raum.


Raumpolitik: Warum brauchen Frauen Raum und was ist eine feministische Besetzung?
Ein Gespräch mit Barbara Klein, Intendantin des KosmosTheaters und Co-Initiatorin der feministischen Besetzung eines ehemaligen Pornokinos, über ein bemerkenswertes Kapitel der österreichischen Frauen- und Kulturpolitik, nachzulesen auf TRANZIT PAPER.