Appel à communication : The construction site within the city and the territory in modern European cities (Ferrare, 13-16 sept. 2023)

The 11th AISU International Congress
Beyond the Gaze. Interpreting and Understanding the City

Session 6.10 The construction site within the city and the territory in modern European cities

From: Valentina Burgassi
Deadline: May 15, 2023

Coordinators: Gaia Nuccio (Università degli Studi di Palermo), Valentina Burgassi (Politecnico di Torino)

Construction and building site practices gained a significant place in architectural history studies of the last thirty years, as fundamental elements for the investigation and understanding of the built environment; however, the role of the building site within the urban and territorial context, studied through its iconography, represents a more recent topic of interest and susceptible to further investigation. The image of the progress of a building site is perhaps «  »plus captivante que celle de l’oeuvre bâtie, plusvivante, pluspuissante que celle de l’édifice achevé » » (Nègre, 2019). This is because it is an iconography of the «  »possible » », and therefore an evidence of the dynamic condition of the building. Beyond the fascination with representations, the image of a building site in its urban and territorial context may be the expression of a political will, a technical necessity. It may contain a set of basic information for understanding the building’s and the city’s history. As a follow-up to recent major international events (exhibitions: «  »Dessiner pour bâtir: Lemétier d’architecte au XVIIe siècle » » edited by Alexandre Cojannot and Alexandre Gady [13/12/2017 – 12/03/2018, Archives Nationales di Parigi] and «  »L’art du chantier. construire et démolir, du XVIe au XXIe siècle » », edited by Valérie Nègre [9/11/2018 – 11/03/ 2019, Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine]) and related publications, the session aims to collect studies dedicated to architectural building site representations in the urban and territorial context, through views, and documents of scientific and technical value concerning the construction process itself, and in paintings.

The pursued historiographical approach is that of investigating on reasons underlying the drafting of the graphic work and impact on the development of the project itself and its urban or rural context, through the following themes:
– The client and the subjects involved in the choices and elaboration of the graphic design
– The role of the construction site in the portrayed context.
– The graphic choices adopted in relation to the value and purpose of iconography.
– The technical, political, social role of the «  »photography » » of the building’s progress of the factory on its transformation over time and the city.

To submit a paper proposal by 15 May 2023:


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