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Renovating Rossi: stories of anticipation in close encounters of the (un)desirable kind
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE). (Critical Studies in Architecture)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6883-6387
2013 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

One day, a PhD candidate in architecture, within Critical Studies at KTH in Stockholm, Sweden, walked into one of Aldo Rossi’s 1977 Bergamo row house units, locked herself in, and began renovating.[1] The building, consisting of five two-story units, has a traditional vernacular stucco exterior in pale ochre, blended with hues of sexism, racism, and a pigment of homophobia. The stairs of the entrance portico leading up to the main door are built with colonial concrete and covered with capitalist green aluminum roofing, trimmed in neoliberalism. She has even attached a mailbox, the slender metal wall-mounted kind with a flap top (in green to match the roof), just outside the entry door for those who wish to exchange correspondence the “old fashioned” way. She lives there now, although the project is unfinished and ongoing. It’s a construction site, but on this particular day, visitors are welcome to an Open House and guided tour.

Part of a PhD project that practices ‘whoness’ and ‘hereness’ through storytelling, holds a special interest in critical architectural pedagogies and asks “If we begin by looking at our most vulnerable, passionate or empowering moments in life, what kind of architecture will we make then?,” this critical fiction begins to ‘build’ a feminist house from the inside out, through an act of occupation and renovation.[2] However, while one visitor is assumed to be following the guided tour, wandering through the renovated rooms, the other visitor never actually sets foot inside. This leaves the reader to reconstruct this reconstruction through their own imagination, with the help of a series of close encounters situated around events, rumors and the effects of the interior changes spilling out into the immediate surroundings, in the guise of enchanting sounds, scents and fablesque garden features.

[1] The inspiration for “locking myself in” is inspired by Ali Smith’s recent novel, There but for the (2011).

[2] A critical fiction is a method or writing experiment that opens up to imaginary locations, allowing us to explore positions other than our own, telling stories while formulating critical arguments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013.
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Research subject
Architecture
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-219381OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-219381DiVA, id: diva2:1162610
Conference
2nd International Conference on Architecture and Fiction- WRITINGPLACE, TU Delft
Note

QCR 20171212

Available from: 2017-12-04 Created: 2017-12-04 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved

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  • apa
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