Sessions & Round Tables


Round Tables

Papers may not have been previously published, nor presented in public. Only one submission per author will be accepted. No one may act both as chair of a session/round table and as a speaker/discussant in another session/round table. All abstracts will be held in confidence during the selection process. With the author’s approval, thematic session chairs may choose to recommend for inclusion in an open session an abstract that was submitted to, but does not fit into, a thematic session. 

Session and round table chairs will notify all persons submitting abstracts of the acceptance or rejection of their proposals and comment on them by November 17, 2023. All chairs have the prerogative to recommend changes to the abstract in order to coordinate it with a session or round table program. The selected speakers must return edited abstracts to chairs no later than December 19, 2023. Authors of accepted paper proposals must submit the complete text of their papers (for a 15-20-minute presentation) to their session chair or a complete draft of the discussion position (for a 5-10-minute presentation) to their round table chair by February 16, 2024. Chairs may suggest editorial revisions to a paper or discussion position in order to make it satisfy session or round table guidelines and will return it with comments to the speaker by March 15, 2024Speakers must complete any revisions and distribute copies of their paper or discussion position to the chair-s by April 19, 2024.* Chairs reserve the right to withhold a paper or a discussion position from the program if the author has refused to comply with these guidelines. It is the responsibility of the chair(s) to inform speakers of these guidelines, as well as of the general expectations for both a session and participation in this meeting. Each speaker is expected to fund his or her own registration, travel and expenses to Athens, Greece. All authors have to pay their registration fee to be included in the programme. 

The final programme of sessions and roundtables will be announced by late April, early May 2024.

This Call for Papers and Discussion Positions can also be read at the EAHN website –

* EAHN2024 will not publish any proceedings. The final texts are for the chairs only to read and/or circulate before the conference.


Sessions (in random order)

Drawing the Ground

Forging “Crossed Histories” of Twentieth-Century Architecture and Urban Design

Cultures of Maintenance: Upkeep and Repair

Toward a Genealogy of Care: Housekeeping and Homemaking

Wars outside and wars inside

Architecture and Anthropocene Air

Tourist imaginaries and architecture performativity in Mediterranean coast from a gender perspective

Ecologies of Stone

Women Making Space in South America, c.1400-1900

A veranda, a view and a motorway. Revisiting post-war touristic architectures in the Mediterranean

Architects societies and associations in the 19th and 20th centuries: centralisation and networks

Democratisation and Architecture in the European South: A Comparative Approach

On Buildings that No Longer Exist

Histories of Data Networks of Urban and Territorial Intelligence

Architectural Historiography and its Moving Images: Cinema as an Agent of Historical Culture

Architectural Embodiments of Grain Sovereignty

Youth and Architecture – Spaces and projects for/by an underrepresented group

Histories of Architecture, Irony and Humour, 1750-present

Provincialised Colonialities

Civic Centre Revisited: The Politics of an Urban Design Mirage

Not so Pure: Modern Interior contaminations

The house types and the type of house: the colonial form for indigenous domesticity

Bureaucracy and Architecture in the Nineteenth Century in Europe and its Colonies: A New Paradigm?

Round Tables (in random order)

Data Narratives of Architectural Modernity

Architectural Histories after the Global Turn


Machines for Settling: The Provisional Architectures of Colonialism 



Drawing the Ground

Chairs: Tulay Atak, Pratt Institute; David Salomon, Ithaca College

Ground is a ground of multiple destructions, wrote Nietzsche. It is also a fundamental architectural concept. It encompasses the natural, social, and political histories of sites and buildings. This includes the history of rocks and soil themselves. This session is interested in papers that examine how architects and historians in different eras and regions have violently manipulated the earth, how they have captured, displaced, and damaged it in the name of tradition, progress, knowledge, and comfort. How has terrain been understood, represented, and forcefully transformed to become historical evidence, building materials, borders, monuments, etc.?

While the ground is often associated with agricultural, funerary, and spiritual structures, we are interested in how the soil operates differently in historically specific civic, civil, commercial, and domestic contexts. Indeed, soil’s separation from agriculture and from the state was an important task in the disciplines of geology, geography, and history. Lucien Febvre, the founder of the Annales School of History, identified the task of geography with the soil and not the State. Geography, he wrote, “does not directly engage with human and political societies, but with the mark they leave on the surface of the earth, and by the imprint they leave there. [Geography] is their projection upon the soil.” Architecture is one of the permanent and expensive ways by which societies project upon the soil and make imprints on it. We are interested in what soil does to architecture just as much as what architecture does to soil.

We are interested in work that address geological and mineralogical theories of architecture. From the rock cut architecture of Cappadocia and the limestone city of Caen to Viollet le Duc’s drawings of Mont Blanc and Semper’s references to crystals. From Loos’ search for stones in quarries to clay extraction sites of Vienna which lent their color to “Red Vienna.” From Roger Caillois to Lina Bo Bardi. How have geology and minerals shaped these and other examples of architectural thought? How, when, and where has the field thought and represented the relationship between biology, chemistry, and geology, between soil, atmosphere, and organisms?

Further, how has the ground has been represented in images and texts? How has architecture conceived, presented, and deployed it in ways that overlap with, or diverge from how landscape architecture and art have? How has the ground historically been shown in sectional drawings in different disciplines? For example, how have Georges Cuvier’s sections of the ground of Paris and other French cities, showing layers of earth and its multi-species inhabitants, or Alexander Humboldt’s sections of earth been related to architectural representations of the ground? What is in a hatch or a texture?

Finally, what artifacts, texts, and events reveal where, when, and why the “deep time” of geology and the slow speed of the soil are operative metaphors in architectural history? What happens when we think of subterranean as “exterranean,” a term coined by Philip Usher, the literary theorist, to refer to extraction that is at the heart of human use of the subterranean? What is at stake in making the ground “speak?” or in “treading lightly on the ground”? When we consider Bruno Latour’s question, “where do we land,” or Michelle Murphy’s “place-thought,” what are alternative conceptions of the ground and how are they represented, narrated, accounted for in architectural history?

To Construct is to Control the Unstable Ground | Yeo-Jin Katerina Bong, The Metropolitan Museum of Art / University of Toronto 

Facing the Ground: Architect Carl Ludvig Engel’s Encounters with Bedrock in Helsinki in Early 1800’s | Markus Lähteenmäki, University College London / University of Helsinki; Mikko Lindqvist, Museum of the City of Helsinki

Blank Spaces and the Measured City: Mapping the 19th-century Parisian Terrain | Min Kyung Lee, Bryn Mawr College

From the Ground Up: Alternative Approaches to Design and Building in the 1980s | Anna Renken, University of Toronto

Beyond the Surface. Narratives on the Ground in the Work of Yves Brunier | Véronique Patteeuw and Mathieu Berteloot, ENSAP Lille


Forging “Crossed Histories” of Twentieth-Century Architecture and Urban Design

Chairs: Tom Avermaete and Cathelijne Nuijsink, ETH Zurich

At long last, historians of architecture recognize the numerous flaws of Euro–American-centred histories of architecture and urban design, which for centuries have glorified individual Western architects and their imposing “colonial” or iconic “capitalist” designs. Promising alternatives come from scholars who try to counter the unilaterality of such unbalanced histories by structuring narratives following the logics of translation, comparative urbanism, and transculturation. These histories view the making of architecture not as a one-man-show, but as a cross-cultural and dynamic collaborative endeavour, without losing sight of the problematic hierarchies of domination and dependency. Making the historiography of architecture more accurate and equitable requires that we expand these efforts to a consistent rewriting of architectural histories using renewed methods of analysis that bring into the picture the many actors, (counter)voices, and differing opinions involved in the making of the built environment.

In this session, we take up the methodological challenge of writing alternative histories of architecture and urban design that can be more inclusive, dynamic, and polyvocal, by exploring the concept of histoire croisée. Histoire croisée, as defined by historian Michael Werner and sociologist Benedicte Zimmermann, is based on the active and dynamic principle of “crossing.” The concept introduces a way of writing history through interweaving the stories of dominant agents with the narratives of those previously excluded or subaltern. Instead of merely studying the relationships between these different narratives, the method is concerned with “the novel and original elements produced by the intercrossing as much as with the way in which it affects each of the ‘intercrossed’ parties”. To this extent, histoire croisée “breaks with a one-dimensional perspective that simplifies and homogenizes, in favor of a multidimensional approach that acknowledges plurality and the complex configurations that result from it”. But while Werner and Zimmermann’s ambitious treatise is full of potential, the actual toolkit necessary for writing such “crossed histories” remains unestablished.

As such, this session invites scholars to explore the possibilities of writing a crossed history by using a rich “site of encounter” within twentieth-century architecture and urban design as a concrete case study: for example, the crossing of people, objects, practices, and perspectives in the activities of the Aga Khan Development Network, the United Nations’ “technical assistance” projects, or the humanitarian aid missions of NGOs. Papers will scrutinize the construction of the selected crossing not merely by understanding the various social viewpoints intersecting at the moment of contact, but also what happened before the crossing, and the outcomes and processes of transformation brought about by the crossing. Scholars are equally challenged to add a reflexive component to their crossed history to further nuance the intersection in terms of their own changing positionality vis-à- vis the object of research.

While this session first and foremost explores ways to capture dynamism in historiography, it equally calls attention to the challenges that come with “crossing”: the necessity to combine multiple sources, the ever-present need to open counter-archives, and how to account for the hierarchies embedded in crossed histories.

Building Solidarity: Weaving Developmental Design and Participatory Action at CINVAs Housing Lab in 1950s Latin America | Marta Caldeira, New York Institute of Technology

Afro-Asian Solidarity and the Modernization of Housing | Shivani Shedde, Princeton University

Anti-Apartheid Activists as the ‘Architects’ of a Global Community: SOMAFCO and Dakawa Settlements in a Rhetorical Perspective | Essi Lamberg, University of Helsinki; Nokubekezela Mchunu, University College Dublin

Histories of land, grain, and architecture across Italy and Libya, 1912-1943 | Maria Luisa Palumbo, Cornell University

Rewriting the Land: Emerging Narratives in Sites of Indigenous Resistance in Contemporary Mexico | Tania Gutiérrez-Monroy, University of British Columbia


Cultures of Maintenance: Upkeep and Repair

Chairs: Ruth Baumeister, Carolina Dayer, Nuria Casais, and Urszula Kozminska, Aarhus School of Architecture

Architecture emerges in its fundamental function to care and the architect as a carer of the environment and the human being.1 In the state of current climate emergency, the traditional paradigm of architecture as concerned with building-up begins to transition to practices of up-holding. Consequently, the responsibility of the architect to work with others towards a building ́s performance over time and its maintenance becomes crucial.

Air pollution, fast production, and strive for progress brought about by 19th-century industrialization, completely changed the aging of buildings, the appearance and structure of cities, and ways of thinking.2 Since then, the lack of acknowledgement of how buildings age has been coupled with a preoccupation for technical perfection and a fixation with the endless new, more commonly visible within consumerist societies of the 20th century.3 While the 21st century continues to endorse these habits, a major call for more attentive positions is needed.

Historical research of architecture has extensively dealt with modern architects’ call to promote maintenance in form of hygiene as an agent in their fight against disease and chaos in urban design and housing, or, related to our conception of how impeccable a building or a city has to be.4 However, research on the role of maintenance from a transcultural and environmental viewpoint is lacking. In the recent past, technology and technical solutions have been considered to be the answer to up-hold buildings and cities. But neither have modern architects taken maintenance into serious account when designing buildings, nor has it been treated as a concern within disciplinary research. This gap has led to a lack of knowledge that is differentiated according to cultures and places.

In the complex, entangled environments in which all living and non-living bodies co-exist, what can the discipline offer to promote practices of up-holding? This session asks who, how, where, and what has historically and unromantically upkeept and repaired buildings? We hope to receive research on specific cases of buildings, architects and other agents, cultural practices, historical theories, building regulations, etc. The session aims to discuss histories and theories from a diversity of places and cultures that have exercised forms of maintenance. We seek to examine, reflect and discuss different ideas and practices of up-holding to avoid generalizations, to create new knowledge through exchange and to visualize otherwise invisible potentials and challenges for the current and future architecture.

Time is Money: The Maintenance of the Peabody Trust | Jesse Honsa, KU Leuven

 Practicing Complaint: Tangled Paths Through Cultures of Maintenance in Danish Social Housing | Heidi Svenningsen Kajita, University of Copenhagen

Knowledge to Retain: History, Buildings and Communities in Portugal and Spain | Ricardo Agarez, Iscte – University Institute of Lisbon

A motivation for maintenance: Nation schools in rural areas of Samsun, Turkey | Ayşenaz Sönmez, İstanbul Technical University

Golconde Dormitory (1935-1948) and its meticulous maintenance programme – the original plan versus today | Helena Čapková, Ritsumeikan University


Toward a Genealogy of Care: Housekeeping and Homemaking

Chairs: Tara Bissett, University of Waterloo; Amari Peliowski, University of Chile

In the recent years, the concept of care has been evoked broadly in architectural history and theory. As a political and critical category, care ethics grew from feminist reconsiderations of ethics and justice theory, where care, reciprocity, and interdependence between human beings and between humans and the non-human realm were given value. From a material perspective, care ethics observes how human actions shape the world, focusing, broadly, on the activities that reproduce what already exists instead of producing the new (Joan Tronto, 1993: 104). Care, in this sense, is understood as the actions that allow for the reproduction of life and the sustainability of environments. Yet as a practice, care is also understood as an economy of transactions between domestic work and remuneration –or the lack of it— that plays out in architectural spaces.

Feminist epistemologies have offered perspectives on the ways that this economy of transactions has defined the domestic sphere. On one hand, they have identified the domestic habits, routines, and practices involved in maintaining life as well as the spaces within which these practices occur—practices that are conventionally understood as secondary to the type of individuated work associated with transcendental world making in the public sphere (Simone de Beauvoir, 1952; Betty Friedan, 1963; Matrix, 1984; Nicole Cox & Silvia Federici, 1975). On the other hand, these epistemologies have also documented female agency in the material world, challenging the historical role of women in the domestic realm and establishing narratives of resistance to normativity through design and affective appropriation of spaces (Virginia Woolf, 1929; Dolores Hayden, 1982; Iris Marion Young, 2005; bell hooks,1990).

Although these feminist interpretations of domestic space carry a profound understanding of how space is gendered and racialized through the reproductive activities that it houses, they seldom draw upon the framework of care ethics. Furthermore, how care serves as a critical category for architectural history and design is still not firmly established. Contrary to the modernist paradigm that divided urban space as distinct places of dwelling, work and leisure, the care framework views the city as the intertwining of productive and reproductive activities that have each their own programmatic requirements with persisting care practices. Thus, the framework of care–or the practices of homemaking, maintenance, preservation, and housework—carries the potential for reimagining architecture.

This session asks: which historical texts build a genealogy for an architecture of care?

Using care as a critical paradigm for reinterpreting the historical relationship between domestic space and labor, we invite researchers to analyze one or a set of critical texts published from circa 1800 until now that set the grounds for an ethics of what we today consider careful architecture. What are these texts, in what context were they written, and how do they relate to

or anticipate an ethics of care? What architectural canon were they opposing or proposing? And how do they challenge our assumptions of architectural practice by foregrounding caretaking as an act of deep value?

A City of Rooms. Housing for Single Working Women in late 19th century Brussels | Beatriz Van Houtte Alonso, Ghent University

Perkins, Addams and Key through Labarca Hubertson: spaces for social care in the late Chilean first wave | Pía Monteaelgre, University of Chile

Mixed use, Complexity and Care. Another look at Jane Jacobs | Elissa Rosenberg, Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design

Who should care? Fellowship + Architecture at the Service of the Homeless in 1980’s Dublin | Ellen Rowley, University College Dublin

The impact of ethics of care on Spanish architecture and urban designers. The cases of Isazkun Chinchilla and Blanca Gutiérrez Valdivia’s writings | Irene González Fernández, University of Zaragoza


Wars outside and wars inside

Chairs: Will Davis, Università della Svizzera italiana; Alex Seo, University of Melbourne

Apparitions. Memories. Visions. War is a paradigm that takes hold of imaginations and shapes livelihoods, resonating long after conflicts have ended. The ghosts of soldiers return to inhabit the present; scars in the walls of buildings return reincarnate through new voices; even trees, vines, and palms remember past dislocations (Tavares, 2018). Forgetting militarized pasts is less an act of recuperation than one of resynthesizing the present. This is particularly true of many postcolonial states, who, faced with the exigencies of building a modern nation, flattened disruptive internal differences with new techniques of governance and discipline, what Seungsook Moon calls “militarized modernity” (2005). These top-down attempts at consolidation, however, rarely result in collective amnesia of conflicts.

For scholars of architecture in/of/as colonialism, how do we reconcile the fact that our archives are registers of dispossession, indexes of displacement? What, in the words of Tina Campt, are we to make of images produced with the purpose of “tracking, cataloguing, and constraining?” (2017) Photographs, maps, and diagrams are popular tools with which to describe architecture’s histories. Seldom are they questioned as the forms of military technology that they are—indeed, whose historical evolution was concomitant with techniques of warfare. The challenge, then, is to think outside the matrix of the military, and crucially, questioning our own methodological tools.

This session seeks papers that deal with the way that elusive, persistent forms of warfare are embedded in architecture and built environments. The session is particularly interested in papers that aim to think outside of the rubrics of nation-states, borders, and their tools. We are open and interested in different historical time periods for responses. How has a collective psyche shaped by military or violent pasts absorbed and reconciled conflict as part of new narratives and ways of being? Papers and authors that critically examine their own subject position in terms of their archives, maps, diagrams, or data otherwise, will be especially welcome.

Warcraft: Of Militarized Handloom and an Ecopolitics of the South Asian Modern | Anooradha Iyer Siddiqi, Barnard College, Columbia University

The Vulnerable Area: On Solly Zuckerman’s Natural History of Destruction and the Scientific Production of Vulnerability |Danielle Hewitt, The Bartlett School of Architecture / London Metropolitan University

Vocational Training Centre in Khartoum 2: A residue of the Cold War in Khartoum | Muram Samir Mohamed Hassan Shaheen, University of Khartoum

War’s Enduring Imprints: Architecture, Migration, and Memory in Chania after the Treaty of Lausanne | Aikaterini Karadima, Technical University of Crete

Drawing Dawson Island, 1889 & 1973 | Ana María León, Harvard University


Architecture and Anthropocene Air

Chairs: Didem Ekici, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; Stamatina Kousidi, Politecnico di Milano

Air is a life-sustaining, elemental substance, yet we usually take it for granted due to its omnipresence and elusive nature. Climate change, however, has brought air into sharp focus across a range of scales from tiny aerosols that carry carbon particles or viruses to the atmosphere, the gaseous envelope that surrounds the earth. Air pollution, pandemics, extreme weather events, and the warming of the atmosphere implicate the Anthropocene, our current geological epoch, with its complex intertwining of the human and the natural world. Although the impacts accumulate at planetary scale, these anthropogenic effects are not evenly distributed. As Timothy Choy remarks, “atmospheres do not equalize, and that breathing together rarely means breathing the same.” Racial, ethnic, and economic disparities make the atmosphere “an unequally shared milieu, an unevenly constituted planetary medium for respiration.”

Composed of a mixture of gases, water vapor, and solid particles, air cannot be considered independently from sociopolitical structures, fossil capitalism, and scientific theory and method. This session will explore the social, political, economic, and epistemological entanglements of the built environment and Anthropocene air from the Industrial Revolution onwards. We invite papers that explore such topics as climatic design, climate control, respiration as a metaphor and physical process in the great indoors and buildings featuring envelopes ranging from permeable to airtight. We also welcome papers on the anthropogenic airborne threats in the built environment including contagion, pollution, and the weaponization of air. How does the built environment mediate the systemic social and racial inequalities inherent in such anthropogenic threats? We particularly encourage historic case studies that conceptualize air in its various manifestations as a dynamic physical and sociopolitical component of buildings, cities, and environments. These include but are not limited to studies on the agency, disparities, pathologies, aesthetics, representation, and technologies of air in the built environment.

Volatile Air in the Colonial Island Laboratory | Alistair Cartwright, University of Liverpool

Architecture and Thermal Power: The Technopolitics of Cooling Semi-outdoor Spaces in Singapore and Doha | Jiat-Hwee Chang, National University of Singapore

The Climatron’s Air: Buckminster Fuller’s Domes of Metaphysical Control | Rami Kanafani, University of Pennsylvania

C21 “Smoke” Nuisance: Ways of Seeing Air, or Integrating Waste Gas into Cement Research | Kim Förster, University of Manchester

Unbreathable Territories: Bauxite Waste in Jamaica, 2016-2022 | Valeria Guzmán Verri, University of Costa Rica


Tourist imaginaries and architecture performativity in Mediterranean coast from a gender perspective

Chairs: Nadia Fava and Marisa García Vergara, University of Girona

John Urry, in his classic book The Tourist Gaze (1990 first edition), opens up the debate on the centrality of the visual in contemporary culture and how this is reflected in the phenomenon of tourism and the ways in which places are visited that are not simply individual and autonomous, but are socially organised. The author manifests how these historical changes in tourism and enclosed territories are necessarily linked to broader transformations in society

The session proposes to investigate the architecture for tourism through the concept of the gaze and performativity as a founder of the historical process of construction of the Mediterranean coast and of how the architecture of tourism has tackled the gender dimension.

It is expected case studies will proposing an analysis of the spatial performativity of imaginaries of tourist otherness in coastal resort architecture, or in informal and ephemeral spaces proposed for leisure or performed by tourists.

The experience, perception, use and appropriation of domestic and urban spaces fundamentally alter the meaning of architecture, shifting it from the architect and builder to the active user. Considering these experiential aspects implies a reconceptualisation of architectural production, in which the practice and use of architectural spaces is revealed as an important part of identity construction, and intersects with feminist concerns about aspects of ‘the personal’, the subject and subjectivity.

Although gender studies are increasingly relevant in architecture and urbanism studies, and the relations between modern domestic spaces and gendered subjectivities have been explored since the 1980s (Beatriz Colomina, Dolores Hayden, Hilden Heynen), tourism spaces – an area of research that has developed in parallel to feminist and gender studies- rarely intersect in a sustained or meaningful way, and the lack of critical thinking to fully incorporate gender into the evaluation of the tourism architecture experience makes it necessary to broaden and deepen gender research by applying a truly feminist perspective.

While architectural criticism has increasingly explored gender and sexual stereotypes in homes and domestic spaces, drawing on arguments from everyday theories, holiday spaces and tourist architectures are hardly investigated. The aim of the session is to explore the architecture and urban contribution to the imaginary of touristic spaces emphasising questions about gender roles in leisure spaces, and to analyse gendered spatial tourist orders.

Cale d’Otranto Beach Resort: story of a project between Italy and France. Noëlle Janet, Gae Aulenti and the Club Méditerranée (1968) | Elisa Boeri and Francesca Giudetti, Politecnico di Milano

Paradise Lost. Landscapes of domesticity and transgression in Valtur’s Italian Resorts | Filippo De Dominicis, Università degli Studi dell’Aquila; Benedetta Di Donato, Sapienza Università di Roma

Antonio Bonet Castellana at Costa Brava: Resort at Costa d’Aro, Girona | Bàrbara Garcia Belmonte and Laia Tarradas, University of Girona

A small catalogue of female stereotypes in Spanish tourist landscapes. 1945-1975 | Carmen Rodríguez, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya

Golden Beach, Golden Girls | Stéphanie Dadour, ENSA Paris-Malaquais


Ecologies of Stone

Chair: Jonathan Foote, Aarhus School of Architecture 

Massive stone building culture can be found in practically any epoch before the 20th century. Ever since Vitruvius listed various stone qualities from in and around Rome, the material has been written into the world history of architecture: from technological to representational; from aesthetic to cultural. The practical barriers to extraction, along with pre-modern and indigeonous notions of geology, meant that stone architecture often had deep connections to the landscape. This symbiotic relationship between geology, landscape and architecture could be read in terms of ecological relations, where human and non-human exist in a non- exploitative and situated manner. In the Inca quarries in the Andes highlands a sacred influence existed between the site, the extracted stone, and the architecture. On the Balearic islands, marès sandstone was once extracted from more than 1500 small quarries, each a hyper-localized building culture of distinct stone type, color and texture. Similar associations could be investigated through cases from around the world, from the sandstone of the Ankor monuments, to the omni-present melekeh limestone of Jerusalem, to the Tuscan pietra serena of 15th century Florence.

In a moment when architecture confronts its relation to material extraction, architectural historiography must re-consider how buildings responded to the normally overlooked landscapes of extraction.1 Recent research outside of architectural history has shifted focus to the extraction landscape. Notions such as ‘quarryscape’ and ‘geo-heritage’ include perspectives of the carved landscape from the geological, ethnographic and archeological point of view.2 This expanded understanding of stone building culture opens the door for new discoveries between architecture, landscape, geology, and environmental history. Following the principles of interconnectedness and ecological thought, there is an opportunity today to investigate how stone building culture developed within a network of relations that include the act of extraction.3

This session invites cases examining stone building culture as critically pursued in connection with stone extraction practices, landscapes and cultures. Examples of such interconnectedness might include: the relations between architecture and geology, stone building techniques and local ecology, or the role of social or labor relations in the quarry to architecture. Papers could pursue topics such as: the reclaimation of quarry sites, the cultural identity of an extracted landscape, buildings themselves as quarries, or the imaginaries of localized plant life within a stone building culture. In short, the session seeks cases from any period or region of massive stone in architecture, not only as a building material, but one that is deeply embededded in a network of relations leading eventually back to the quarry. Non-western and indigeonous cases are particularly welcome.

Ecology of Stone in the Seascape: Stone Trade in Medieval and Early Modern Adriatic Basin | Christiano Guarneri, Ca’Foscari University of Venice

Rethinking the Lithic Architectural Landscape of Renaissance Florence | Michael J. Waters, Columbia University

Reserving Stone: The case of Ketton stone at Downing College      | Natalia Petkova, Université Paris Est

Stones and national culture building: Moshe Yaffe, an unknown stone masone in Palestine and Israel | Yehotal Shapira and Tal Alon-Mozes, Technion IIT

Resurrecting the Quarries of Rome: Algerian Onyx and French Mineralogical Surveys in the 19th Century | Ralph Ghoche, Columbia University


Women Making Space in South America, c.1400-1900

Chairs: Anne Hultzsch and Dr Sol Pérez Martínez, ETH Zurich

The period between 1400 and 1900 in South America is characterised by a set of transitions and processes of transculturation as indigeneity emerged from the clash with colonisation. Empires competed, indigenous cultures grappled with European colonisation, and both later fed into American nation building. This session focuses on the period between the creation of the Tawantinsuyu, the Incan Realm of the Four Parts, in 1438, thus the definition of Andean territory as a continuous region, to the 1880s when the Mapuche people in Southern Chile and Argentina were the last indigenous group to lose control over their territories. The session aims to address gaps in the architectural historiography of the Andean region especially regarding moments of transition where ‘cultures meet, clash and grapple with each other’ creating ‘contact zones’ (Pratt, 1991). We seek to start these new histories through the perspective of women – from any class or ethnicity – as one of the groups often excluded from scholarship on the period. We ask how those identifying as women influenced, shaped, critiqued, and made spaces within and alongside the force field of the contact zone, with its asymmetrical power relations, its struggles, pains, and opportunities?

Challenging linear Euro-American architectural narratives of styles imported to the supposed new world, we invite contributions exploring the role of women in shaping public and private spaces in the Andean territories – from home and convent to street and plaza. Practices to be examined for female space-making opportunities could include, for example, building, homemaking, designing, writing, patronage, financing, teaching, lobbying, gardening, or farming, even mothering. Contributions should explore questions emerging from the triangle between gender, architectures, and South America as a contact zone. What are the spatial categories most useful when exploring women ‘making space’ in the period and region (Matrix, 1984)? Does the public-private dichotomy of separate spheres serve here? What sources provide evidence how women made space? Which writing techniques yield the best results, from archival tracing to historical fiction? How can we fill gaps when there are few traces (Hartman, 2021)?

Besides a methodological appeal for new approaches, the session also queries key terminologies of architectural history: Who is the space-maker during this period? What is the relationship between space-making and the architect? Did the professionalisation of architecture during the 19th century further the exclusion of women from space-making practices? Was there a period of increased access colonial or institutional transitions closed doors to women? Are there comparable developments in other regions?

This session hopes to facilitate a pivotal change to how we look at the formation of architectural cultures in the past through the eyes of women and their lived experiences, considering questions of race, class, or religion, besides those of gender. As scholarship in the field of Latin American architectural history has so far often been dominated by isolated time periods defined by the male coloniser – such as pre-colonial, colonial, post-colonial, modernism – the proposed period between c. 1400 and 1900 invites cross-readings based on dynamic approaches to historical moments, places, and protagonists.

Inca Architecture: A Woman’s World | Stella Nair, University of California, Los Angeles

The Cacica, the Mestiza and the Renegade: a Female Genealogy of Early Colonial Santiago | Daniela Bustamante-Canales, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Controlling la mujer popular: moralist female writings in 19th-century Bogotá | Paula Salazar-Rodriguez, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales

Aniwee or the Warrior Queen: the Tehuelches and the Patagonian region in the work of Lady Florence Dixie (1879 – 1890) | María Eugenia Allende Correa, Universidad de los Andes, Chile

Respondent: Catalina Mejía Moreno, Central Saint Martins, UK


A veranda, a view and a motorway. Revisiting post-war touristic architectures in the Mediterranean

Chairs: Dimitra Kanellopoulou, ENSA Paris-Malaquais; Marilena Kourniati, ENSA Paris-La Villette

The end of World War II finds European urban centres and territories massively destroyed. Parallel to a huge worksite of cities’ reconstruction, supported by the Marshall Aid in Europe, economies of the Mediterranean basin invest for their development on another industry less widespread but enough promising: tourism. A mythical land of travel between East and West, of scientific expeditions, and an obligatory destination for artists, architects and archaeologists in the 19th century, the Mediterranean gradually became the leading destination for mass tourism in the 20th century. Large-scale investments on the coastal line of Mediterranean Europe aim to boost potential touristic territories’ by enhancing accessibility and constructing new imaginaries through important infrastructure works and touristic accommodations complexes. Coupled with visions of the Modern Movement and aligned with an era of industrial innovation and standardization, numerous emerging architectures see the day in coastlines and mountains. The period from 1950s-to 1970s was particularly fruitful in Spain, Italy, Greece, Southern France for its audacious projects both in terms of investment and architecture but also on the Mediterranean coasts of the Maghreb countries, where mass tourism appeared after their independence. These years marked also an era of constant tension and negotiation between heritage institutions and state policies, weaving each its proper agenda of economic development using local culture and Mediterranean landscape features as competitive touristic products. Hotels, touristic villages, motels, marinas, forge the landscape, and offer a new vision of life style according to the demands of a new era; this of consumerism and leisure. Significant examples of renamed architecture, vehicle the ambition of each country to demarcate itself as a prominent touristic destination but also formulate a new imaginary of traveling. By the turn of the 1980s and in a context of mass tourism’sexpansion and new trends in tourism activity, these architectures started to lapse. Some have been urgently transformed to host new uses, others have been labelled and sanctuarized while others have been abandoned and left to decline. It is the aim of this session to question the role of these productions- witness of the past – in today’s territory transformation and examine the hypothesis of a new dialogue between modern heritage and acts of transformation in the very heart of an interdisciplinary debate. Under which gaze can we approach today these architectures? How do these objects shape contemporary landscapes and succeed in nourishing a common Mediterranean touristic imaginary today? Far beyond being dissociated elements in the same geographic context, these architectures present remarkable common features as social languages structured around debates on regionalism, universalism and culturalism. For this reason, they offer a great opportunity to address, through a fresh look, questions on heritage and touristic policies in times of crisis (ecological, economic, health) and shortage of resources. The session welcomes all disciplinary approaches examining the history and the potential capacity of transformation of these architectures as a common heritage in becoming. We particularly encourage discussions tending to overcome traditional readings of modern heritage as a subject of protection and conservation while proposing parallel explorations of these architectures as a fertile ground for actualized narratives on tourism.

State initiatives regarding Tourist Facilities on the northern shore of the  Mediterranean (1950-1975) | Vassilis Colonas, University of Thessaly

Shaping and representing a seaside tourist territory. The case of the Italo-French Riviera, 1950s-1970s | Alessandro Benetti (independent scholar)

The Coastline, contested: Mimarlık and tourism development in the 1970s Turkey | Koken Burcu, TU Delft

Architecte de soleil: Olivier-Clément Cacoub and the Nationalist Development of the  Tunisian Leisurescape | Nancy Demerdash, Albion College


Architects societies and associations in the 19th and 20th centuries: centralisation and networks

Chairs: Guy Lambert, ENSA Paris-Belleville; Estelle Thibault, ENSA Paris-Belleville

The creation of professional associations for architects in the 19th century can be considered a significant factor in the institutionalization and the definition of the profession. In the 19th century, the following were created in Europe and North America : Architekten Verein zu Berlin (AVB, Berlin, 1824) Institute of the British Architects, then Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA, Londres, 1834), Schweitzerischer Ingenieur- und Architektenverein/ Société suisse des ingénieurs et architectes (SIA, Zurich, 1837), Société centrale des architectes (SCA, Paris, 1843), American Institute of Architects (AIA, New-York, 1857), Société des architectes diplômés par le gouvernement (SADG, Paris, 1877), Bund Deutscher Architekten (BDA ; Association of German Architects, Francfurt, 1903).

These associations and societies, which have long been part of the institutional landscape, were often preceded by the creation of more ephemeral associations, but with the same motivations. Their mission varied according to the contexts: to defend the rights, the interests and the status of the architect, to think about the structuring of the public commissions, to define the perimeter of the expertise of the architect in the wider ecosystem of the professions (engineers, town planners, decorators…). Through their operations and productions (publications, meetings, awards, conferences, etc.) they often played a centralizing role on a national scale, bringing together professionals from all over the country.

Networks quickly developed between these societies and the earliest ones could serve as a reference for the later ones. This was the case in Europe, but also in other continents, as borders and geopolitical influences were reconfigured. The Universal Exhibitions (1867, 1878, 1889, 1900…) were the occasion for international congresses of architects, allowing them to intensify intellectual contacts, to adjust their respective actions, to confront pedagogical systems, to debate the situation of the profession according to geographical areas, and sometimes to build common responses. The construction of these international networks, both scholarly and professional, strengthened the legitimacy of these societies within their own national frameworks, particularly in their demands on public authorities.

This session invites contributions that investigate not only the role of these professional associations in their own national context, but also their mutual interactions. Particular attention will be paid to the correspondents, to the exchanges and to the specific frameworks in which these interrelations develop. We are also interested in understanding the topics that these associations debate (stylistic, legislative, organizational issues…) and the effects of these networks on the redefinition of professional identities. We encourage proposals on non- European countries and on the evolution of international cartography over the period, in connection with the reconfiguration of borders.

An Empire of Fellows, Associates, and Licentiates: Architectural Mobilities, Allied Societies and the RIBA | Soon-Tzu Speechley and Julie Willis, University of Melbourne

Swiss Architects Associations, their Journals and the German Model (1835-1914) | Gilles Prod’hom, University of Lausanne

A puzzle to piece together: Sociedad Central de Arquitectos (Buenos Aires, 1886-1926) | Magalí Franchino, Universidad Nacional de La Plata / Universitat de Girona

Architectural Professionalization and Transnational Exchange in the Modern Arab World, 1900s-1960s | Nadi Abusaada, ETH Zurich

The Empire Strikes Back. The Commonwealth Association of Architects conferences, 1963-1983 | Janina Gosseye, TU Delft 


Democratisation and Architecture in the European South: A Comparative Approach

Chair: Manuel López Segura, Harvard University 

Southern Europe remains an outlier in the history of the modern politics of architecture. With the notable exception of Italy, the historical trajectories of Portugal, Greece, and Spain after the Second World War are still understudied. They are somewhat aberrant to the mainstream processes of democratization and Keynesian capitalist expansion that extended over thirty years, and whose architectural articulation has been the subject of much recent scholarship. Indeed, it was only in the mid- to late-1970s that these countries definitively adopted constitutional regimes comparable to those of their Western European counterparts. Owing to this time lag, and to the interpretive dissonances that it entails, existing narratives on the architecture of democracy and the welfare state have elided these three latecomers. The fall of the Regime of the Colonels in Greece, and of Salazar’s and Franco’s dictatorships in the Iberian Peninsula, presented architects with unprecedented opportunities to explore untried realms of design: heritage preservation, urban spaces for a newly accessible public sphere, the seats of representative bodies, and the infrastructure of welfare. Paradoxically enough, that happened just as the role of architecture in social life was beginning to dwindle across the West, dragged down by the combined effects of economic crisis and neoliberal reaction.

This session aims to address that historical singularity, extending in space and time – toward the south and toward later decades– our grasp of European experiments in the construction of a more inclusive built environment. We invite contributions that will help us comprehend the commonalities and idiosyncrasies of the Greek, Portuguese, and Spanish experiences of transition to and unfolding of democracy during the 1970s and 1980s. Crucially, the session seeks to overcome nation-state frameworks toward a comparative approach. We accept case studies as long as they yield conceptual and methodological tools with the potential for generalization, and we welcome plainly historiographic papers that elaborate theoretical instruments or that critically revise and adapt those we already possess. Comparative analyses across the three countries, or between any of them and developments in northern latitudes, are particularly encouraged. Specific topics might include the changed relationship between public patronage and architectural practice, the representation of institutional openness, popular participation in decision-making procedures regarding urban and territorial planning, typological innovation in response to educational or healthcare programs, architects’ civic commitment, and so on.

Designing Democracy: Spanish Architectural Exhibitions under Socialist Cultural Policies. 1982-1985 | Esteban Salcedo Sánchez, Andrés Bello University

The Controversies behind the Democratization Process of Architectural Research in Portugal: From the Governmental Instituto de Alta Cultura to the Philanthropic Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation | Bruno Gil and Carolina Coelho, University of Coimbra 

“Built with People’s Sweat and Blood”: The Greek Home Democratization Legacy | Konstantina Kalfa, Athens School of Fine Arts

Built in Contradiction: A Parallel Reading of Housing Policies in Portugal and Spain, 1974-1985 | Catarina Ruivo, Ana Mehnert Pascoal, and Ana Costa Rosado, Iscte – University Institute of Lisbon

Democracy for Whom? Methodological and Theoretical Tools towards a Feminist Analysis of Architectural Professional Media | Lucía C. Pérez-Moreno, Zaragoza University / KU Leuven


On Buildings that No Longer Exist

Chairs: Savia Palate, University of Cyprus; Linda Stagni, ETH Zurich

Even though architecture carries cultural meanings, buildings often come with an end, meaning demolition. Occasionally, activists, scholars, and practitioners initiate campaigns to save these seemingly “throwaway” buildings, demonstrating that the notion of “throwaway” can only be fluid as socio-political circumstances alter hierarchies, priorities, and definitions in conservation processes. This gap between tangible and intangible value reiterates the significance of architectural history as a contributor to the meanings behind the architectural object. What is the role of architectural history even after the demolition of a building? How does the vanished architectural object relate to the narratives of architectural history? What methods and sources hold the information that may be missing? And, to what extent methods and sources can be inherently ambiguous or misleading in their space-making, stories, and make-believe narratives regarding the “life” and “death” of these buildings?

This session focuses on the conceptual and methodological challenges that relate to the production of architectural history of buildings that no longer exist. The lack of information and inconsistency of the archival material, as well as the fact that fieldwork, observation, and the lived experience are no longer possible, call for other ways of conducting architectural research. We aim to discuss alternative methodologies and new media that architectural historians utilise to look into less known or neglected cases of architectural buildings (from different chronological periods and irrespective of their geography) that have been vanished, yet they hold the potential of producing narratives that can be diverse, plural, and decolonial. These narratives may demonstrate an inherent ambiguity of the transposition of the building in words and images, positioning the building into a threshold between myth and reality, as well as “life” and “death.”

Buildings that no longer exist unfold stories that enhance a nuanced understanding of architecture, and they embody a plurality of interpretations questioning what is worth saving for. Currently, the issue of demolition becomes urgent, raising environmental concerns juxtaposed with social dilemmas. The narratives of architectural history that shift buildings to future heritage become equally essential, at a time when increasing efforts to breathe life into outmoded structures and to creatively reuse buildings from salvaged components try to prevail.

Was There “Chinese Architectural History” Before the “Death” of Chinese Architecture? The Transpacific Journey of the Chinese Reception Hall | Chenchen Yan, Princeton University

Reckoning with the Ruination of Reused Ruins in Ottoman Bodrum: Reconstructing the Inhabited Heritage of the Destroyed Neighbourhood Built out of the Mausoleum of Halikarnassos | Sean Silvia, Princeton University

Industrial Architecture in the Shadow of Iztaccíhuatl | Ivan Gort-Cabeza de Vaca, University of Michigan, and Claire Zimmerman (co-author), University of Toronto

 Liquidating Architecture: Mass Demolition and the Danish “Ghetto Plan,” 1990s-2018 | Jennifer Mack, KTH Royal Institute of Technology / Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study 

Reclaiming a Tangible and Intangible Heritage at Risk: A Digital Reconstruction of Venice’s Lagoon Archipelago | Ludovica Galeazzo, Università degli Studi di Padova


Histories of Data Networks of Urban and Territorial Intelligence

Chair: Dimitris Papanikolaou, NTUA

From the ancient networks of optical telegraphy to today’s Internet of Things, information and communication (IC) technologies have always shaped the design, production, operation, management and experience of architectural and urban space. Telecommunications and the internet were not a novelty of the twentieth century. Early data networks communicated intelligence across land and sea through such media as fire, sound, light, pigeons, mirrors, and flags. In the twelfth century BCE, for example, Agamemnon used a bonfire relay line across six hundred kilometers of ocean and terrain to communicate the news of Troy’s fall to Mycenae. In 150 BCE, Greek historian Polybius described a system of sending pre-encoded messages with torches combinations (Holzmann and Pehrson 1994). In 1453, Nicolo Barbaro mentioned in his diary how Constantinople’s bell-tower network alerted citizens in real time to the tragic progress of the siege by the Ottomans (Barbaro 1969). And in the mid-eighteenth century, telecommunications developed into vast territorial networks that used visual languages and control protocols to disassemble, route and reassemble messages and phrases consisting of discrete signs between any origin and any destination in the network in unprecedented speeds (Papanikolaou 2015; Chappe 1824). In his book ME++ in 2004, William Mitchell, director of the Smart Cities group at MIT, portrayed the urban condition of twenty-first century cities as an intelligent, networked landscape that uses electronic nervous systems to serve the needs of its users in more efficient and sustainable ways (Mitchell 2004). It is fair to say that nearly two centuries ago, optical telegraphy created a similar, mechanical nervous system, with similar rhetoric but more tangible forms of implementation. Optical telegraph networks synergistically merged human operators, mechanical interfaces, and telescopes with decision makers and financial institutions, thereby creating self-regulating cybernetic systems. Train stations could inform waiting passengers of scheduling delays in nearly real time. Brokers in Paris could arbitrage from rising trading prices in London in a matter of minutes. And corporate businessmen could send frequent optical mails, or “omails,” to arrange time-sensitive deals.

The session seeks to trace the evolution of the concept of the smart city throughout the history of territorial networks of information and intelligence, focusing on the relationship between information technology, architecture, society and geography. The session invites contributions that examine technologies, systems and mechanisms for the collection, movement, storage, processing and management of information at large scales and distances across history, focusing on the architectural and spatial aspects of information networks, and on the ways these technologies influenced societies, architecture and politics. Authors are invited to submit papers in one of the following thematic areas. 1) Histories of analog or digital telecommunication systems and their relationship with architecture, technology and society. 2) Histories of analog or digital human-machine interfaces and decision support systems for urban operations. 3) Histories of systems, institutions and institutional mechanisms of collective action in relation to commerce, civil infrastructure or military operations. 4) Histories of urban simulation models, games or machines to predict scenarios of urban operations. 5) Design principles, protocols and human factors of early communication systems for urban operations.

Proxy Warfare and Environmental Computation | Kanwal Aftab, University of Toronto

HOK-net: Corporate Architecture and the Emergence of the Global City | Mathew Allen, Washington University in St. Louis

The formation of the Computer Research Group and the state-academic- industrial complex in Britain in the late 1960s | Eleni Axioti, Architectural Association School of Architecture / University of the Arts London

The Colonizing Ether: Wireless Telegraphy and Mondialité in the Belgian Congo | Michael Faciejew, School of Architecture, Dalhousie University

Programmed Territories: The Death of the Map and the Birth of the Network, Geography in the 1960s | Pablo Miranda Carranza, Lund University


Architectural Historiography and its Moving Images: Cinema as an Agent of Historical Culture

Chairs: François Penz, University of Cambridge; Stavros Alifragkis, Hellenic Open University

In paraphrasing Francis Haskell’s celebrated History and Its Images: Art and the Interpretation of the Past (1993), this session seeks to investigate how moving images (documentary, narrative and experimental cinema alike) have shaped popular imagination around modern architecture over the past century and, correspondingly, how cinematic representations of the modern city and its architecture in digital and celluloid media have influenced contemporary scholarship on the history and historiography of the modern movement; its primary sources, discovery tools and research methodologies. Several decades since Sigfried Giedion’s statement ‘only film can make the new architecture intelligible’,1 architecture and cinema persist in following intertwining paths; the former by endowing with narrative meaning the spaces of storytelling and the latter by fuelling popular culture with an ever-replenished array of ways to reimagine the past, the present and the future of human habitation. Over this long span of time, cinematic representations of modern living -whether utopian or dystopian- have generated a considerable body of research that bears witness to the internal shifts and changes of 20th century architectural history and historiography. This session invites researchers of interwar and post-WWII global architecture to submit papers that investigate the role(s) of cinema as a medium and as an agent of methodological renewal in the field. In particular, we encourage proposals that shed fresh light on the various ways historical studies have incorporated the contextual interpretation of moving images with a view to re-construct our recent architectural past or offer special insights into the ways societies perceive, value and respond to architectural modernity through cinema. Building on the notion that cinema, among other things, catches precious glimpses of quotidian life, thus demonstrating how built or imaginary, public or private spaces are experienced, this session aims to explore the following, indicative research questions: what are the epistemological premises for treating cinema as a valid source of historical knowledge; what does cinema tell us about the -otherwise unattainable- recent history of architecture; how is cinema different from other (archival) sources (e.g., photography or architectural drawings); do aspects of mise-en-scène, mise-en-cadre or editing contribute to the construction of historical narratives about the modern built space; has cinema impacted the way architectural history is being taught; has cinema played a key role in popularising modern architecture? This session explores cinema’s affective and evocative power in order to examine how moving images can both render modern architecture accessible to a wider audience of non-experts and become a potent tool for enabling new, multiple, socially relevant and culturally sensitive re-narrations of the past as a basis to envisioning new futures. In the process, this session aspires to challenge common perceptions about modernity’s normativity and highlight the pluralism of its locally inflected cultural forms.

Amateur Films: An Agent for Diversifying the Narratives of the Modern Movement Historiography | Veronique Boone, Université Libre de Bruxelles

‘Past-forward’: Architecture Filmmaking as a Creative Unarchiving Practice | Popi Iacovou, University of Cyprus

The Plattenbau Represented: Cinema and the reception of East German Architecture (1946-1990) | Peter Sealy, University of Toronto

Film as Benefactor: The Case of Joseph Gantner and Das Neue Frankfurt | Lutz Robbers, Jade University

‘Forget where you are, and that your life is so much less eventful than that on the silver screen’: Filmic projections of the architectural future in Stockholm, 1930-1935 | Tim Anstey, The Oslo School of Architecture and Design


Architectural Embodiments of Grain Sovereignty

Chairs: Petros Phokaides, University of Thessaly; Fatina Abreek-Zubiedat, Tel-Aviv University 

Across the global south, millions of people have been engulfed by food insecurity, with covid-19, climate change, and the energy crisis pushing them further into poverty, hunger, and malnutrition, endangering their lives. Access to wheat, and other grains, which have provided staple food for low-middle income people throughout history, continued to form a global, contested “frontier”: a crucial zone where the coloniality of agricultural modernization and neoliberal agribusiness is deployed, and a horizon of decoloniality, where diverse agro-ecologies, subsistence economies, Indigenous self-determination practices, and prospects of grain sovereignty persist. Recent studies interrogate architecture’s intricate role in shaping this global “frontier” in at least two ways: the first investigate (post)colonial development practices to emphasize the circular processes of economic extraction and accumulation and their social and environmental impacts, and the second emphasizes the linear violence of settler colonialism to expose the structural elimination of the Indigenous poor.

Aspiring to expand and deepen current discussions, this session calls for writing critical architectural histories ‘against the grain.’ Drawing on James Scott’s (2017) study of grain economies embraced by early states as a vast subordination mechanism to colonize lands and people, this session seeks to historicize and problematize architecture’s intertwinement with grain economies at the intersection of extraction and colonial elimination. Under what circumstances did architectural expertise intersect with scientific and political visions of self-sufficiency, ‘humanitarian,’ and development aid policies that turned to grains to combat hunger globally? How did architecture help transform grains into a manageable resource for accumulating economic and scientific power, and into an instrument in the hands of nation-states and global corporations? We seek to understand the ways silos, mills, warehouses, depots, markets, and ports facilitated the production, storage, and trade, effectively regulating access to grain crops, and in turn, to food security, across contexts. We also aim to explore how contested representations of grain security took shape across a network of spaces: from scientific labs and crop stations to political forums, planning offices, and cultivation fields, eventually ‘tying’ together international development agencies, governmental and political elites, agronomists, architects,planners, and farmers. We aspire to discuss how diverse environmental conditions inform transnational and local architectural histories of grain crops, such as wheat, oats, rice, and corn, that allow us to unravel geopolitical dynamics as well as social-cultural struggles mediated by the built environment.

Not less importantly, inspired by Nugue wa Thiong’o (1967) A Grain of Wheat, this session seeks to shift epistemologies of power and draw attention to subjugated knowledges to map and un-map extraction histories. We welcome papers that expose the persistence of the colonial past in the present while addressing Indigenous agency to secure grains and the redistribution of resources. We are especially interested in papers that employ decolonial and post-human methodologies in writing architectural histories of subsistence farming, commoning, local autonomy, and practices of grain sovereignty, for humans and non-human animals. This session aspires to generate discussions that empower architectural historiography in developing proactive stances and pedagogies addressing hunger, equitable economic growth, and fair distribution of resources.

Architectures of Tractorization: Ukrainian Grain and the First Five-Year Plan | James Graham, California College of the Arts

Mobilizing Wheat: Grain Exhibition Truck Caravans in Fascist Italy | Ruth W. Lo, Hamilton College 

Harvesting Independence: The Architecture of Agriculture in México’s Central Valley, 1922-1968 | Nikki Moore, Wake Forest University

Epistemologies of Grain: Nordic Agricultural Research Centre in Tanzania | Maryia Rusak, ETH Zurich

Security, Sovereignty, Justice: Famine and the Colonial Epistemology of Modern Architecture | Ateya Khorakiwala, Columbia University 


Youth and Architecture – Spaces and projects for/by an underrepresented group

Chairs: Sabrina Puddu, University of Cambridge; Francesco Zuddas, Architectural Association 

Among the human groups catered by architectural thought and practice, youth is an underrepresented one. Whereas infancy, adulthood, and old age are vastly intercepted, discussed, and designed, that stage of life that is roughly contained between 14-20 years of age, and that is also associated to the term adolescence, seems to escape architectural definition. To be true, this might be to the advantage of the group in question, and such escape might indeed be considered the mirror image of rebellion as a key feature of such peculiar moment in the development of the individual. Besides some of the few known examples of youth turned into architectural types – the likes of youth clubs or student dormitories – how can youth enable a different conceptualisation of architecture beyond the reduction of human groups into their spatial correspondences?

This session aims to expand on this question by considering, reflecting, and seizing upon the inherent conflict of youth: on the one side, it is a moment of fragility for the human being, which requires a protective attitude to enable its further blossoming into adulthood; on the other, the young has the tendency to rebel against any paternalist form of protection exactly for the purposes of getting to adulthood in a more personal and freer way. The session seeks to gather insights into a broad range of responses to such conflictive category by spanning from buildings to ore ephemeral events, and taking the post-1968 period to this day as its historical framework, using 1968 as pivotal for the emergence of the young as a political creature. In turn, it aims to use youth and the young as lenses to further understand the power dynamics of top-down control and bottom-up resistance that shape the conception and practice of space.

In particular, the session seeks contributions that reflect on, but are not limited to:

– Spatial experiments from 1968 to today designed and/or collectively enacted by young people (festivals, pop-up events,

temporary appropriations of spaces, cooperative enterprises);

– Reviews of seminal readings on youth and adolescence and their relation to space, architecture and cities;

– Projects (built or unbuilt) designed for youth that either responded to or challenged any possible classification of such age group.

Proposals are encouraged that consider a broad range of cultural backgrounds, with particular interest in the Global South and other underrepresented contexts.

From Youth Conservation Corps to Urban Street Theatre Karl Linn and the Design of Teenage Public Space | Anthony Raynsford, San Jose State University

Building a Floating Refuge: The Pawtucket Ferry and the Inherent Tensions of Youth-Led Design | Jeremy Lee Wolin, Princeton University

Youth’s appropriation of public space | Georgia Pantouvaki, National Technical University of Athens

The set design for Fes-me un lloc. An innovative theatrical space for and by youth | Aaron Jara-Calabuig, Universitat Politècnica de València

The Tall School Building: Reconfiguring the Education Spaces of Youth | Inbal Ben-Asher Gitler, Sapir Academic College; Yael Allweil, Technion IIT 


Histories of Architecture, Irony and Humour, 1750-present

Chairs: Michela Rosso, Politecnico di Torino; Katerina Zacharopoulou, The Bartlett School of Architecture

With the transformations of the public sphere and the rise of a mass public in the eighteenth century, architecture has become part of a media-driven culture. Among the genres addressing the built environment some emerged that were especially effective in re-appropriating and disseminating architectural culture, displaying its distortions or singling out its inadequacies. In a media-saturated culture humour stands out as a form of social communication and as a means to portray society, revealing the ambivalences of metropolitan life and exposing the shocks provoked by processes of modernization. Though less exposed to social criticism than the politician, the figure of the architect has not stayed safe from the pencils of cartoonists and satirical writers. From Hogarth’s “Five Orders of Periwigs” to George Cruikshank’s perceptive cartoons of the 1820s uncovering the reality of the London building world, Karl Arnold’s caricatures lampooning the 1914 Werkbund Exhibition, and Saul Steinberg’s celebrated cartoons of New York City and urban spaces, graphic humor appears as a promising, yet largely uncharted terrain of investigation for the architectural historian.

At the same time, humour, in its different manifestations of irony, joke, derision and wit, has served – and continues to serve, as a powerful tool for the modern architect, not least as an instrument of self-promotion in an increasingly competitive professional market. Thus, the historical investigation of architectural humour might encompass the entire itinerary of modernity, from Pugin’s caricatures of notable nineteenth-century buildings to Le Corbusier’s incorporation of popular cartoons in his Urbanisme, Venturi and Scott Brown’s use of parody as a polemical tool, Stanley Tigerman’s Architoons, and, more recently BIG’s graphic novels, architectural comics by Lewardists, or Bow-Wow’s explorations into irony’s creative resources. Despite the abundance of materials and the potential fertility of this field of study, the nexus between architecture and the rhetorical strategies of the comic remains largely unexplored.

This panel posits architectural humour as a serious object of study: its aim is to discuss the modes in which the architectonic and the humorous intersect and how this encounter can reveal ideological fault-lines and expose critical subtexts that are not always obvious at first glance. It calls for papers which explore the diversity of historical trajectories of humour as applied to architecture, from 1750 to the present, in western and non-western cultures. We are interested in episodes of visual and verbal humour produced within and outside the architectural discipline: these may include cartoons and satirical texts targeting architects and their works and disseminated through non-disciplinary publications and popular media; architects’ texts and projects – built or unbuilt, in which the use of humour is pivotal for the construction of design strategies and poetics.

The following questions are at stake: What are the issues addressed by episodes of humour? When does humour cross paths with architectural work and design processes, and how does it affect the perception of architects and their work? What are the forms of interaction, mutual exchange or cross-fertilisation that can be observed between architectural humour and the internal discourses of the field?

Mediating the Monument and the City: Caricatures of Spanish Buildings in ‘Los Viajes de Blanco y Negro’ (1894–1896)  | Pilar Morán García, School of Architecture, Universidad Internacional de Cataluña

The Soviet Communal Apartment and its Absurdist Troubadour | Tijana Vujosevic, The University of British Columbia

‘Funny Brutalism’, or, Something Funny Happened on the Way to Postmodernity | Luis Miguel (Koldo), Zaragoza University; Wouter Van Acker, Université libre de Bruxelles

Designing modern parodies: Piero Portaluppi’s ironic gaze | Fabio Marino, Politecnico di Milano

respondent: Elad Horn, Technion IIT


Provincialised Colonialities

Chairs: Manuel Sánchez García, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid; Juan Luis Burke, University of Maryland, College Park

In the introduction to John H. Elliott’s ‘Empires of the Atlantic World: Britain and Spain in America 1492-1830’ (2006), the late British historian introduces the idea of comparative history as a ‘fluctuating process,’ not unlike ‘playing the accordion.’ In the first movement, the comparative method compresses a diversity of histories in search of their common traits, giving birth to the global history of colonial empires, architectures, cities, and landscapes. A similar effect has resulted from the de-colonial and post-colonial fields, which have compressed shared histories of slavery, forced labour, violence, and trauma into generalized perspectives. However, accordions will not produce long melodies with a single movement. Compression must be complemented with expansion, i.e., inquiries on regionalized dissimilarities and local features that resist generalization. The colonial/de-colonial category is particularly sensitive in this regard. It conflates long chronologies from early modernity to the contemporary age, grouping multiple geographies, political landscapes, and cultural backgrounds. To this day, nineteenth-century nation-building discourses influence the scholarly narrative, portraying the historical past through political lenses, borders, symbols, and enclosed identities that quickly fall apart under the scrutiny of more nuanced and localized approaches.

This expansive movement of deconstruction and criticism frames the desire to assemble this session. We seek contributions that problematize the established discourses of coloniality and the histories of the built environment through provincialized case studies and thought-provoking methodologies. Authors working on both pre-1800 and post-1800 settings are encouraged to submit, as well as those interrogating geographies in the global south. We are particularly interested in histories focused on dynamic colonial frontiers and the built environments connected to them, aiming at the liminal instants in which human and non-human agents become colonizers and/or the colonized. Instances where racial and religious discourses are problematized, are welcomed and encouraged. We are particularly interested in those authors working on provinces and regions geographically set in what is today Europe, its periphery, and its colonized territories that have been traditionally left aside from hegemonic discourses, including, but not limited to Islamic heritages, Nordic components, Romani migrations, the diverse colonized territories of the Americas, Africa and Asia, and their re-imagination by travellers, chroniclers, philosophers, and artists from 1500 onwards. Papers can be focused on, but not limited to, buildings, architectural designs, urban projects, landscape depictions, printed media, atlases, or exhibitions.

Ultimately, we wish to gather a group of speakers and contributions displaying ways in which the generalized conception of a colony fails to grasp this phenomenon’s sheer diversity and complexity. Regardless of the global imperialist oppressive system and the enabling legal frameworks at play, each case in the session should introduce new nuanced particularities, showing that even if we can agree on general trends and narratives of colonial domination and resistance (compression), at the end of the day, each province deserves to discuss its coloniality in its own terms (expansion).

Colonialities of the Early Modern Eastern Adriatic architecture: between historiography and territorialisation | Jasenka Gudeljm, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. 

Rice and Sugar: Tracing the Dutch colonial legacy in Java’s hinterlands through the Great Post Road | Sandro Armanda, KU Leuven                 

Light Bulbs, Fertilizer, and Sewing Machines: Metrics of Development from Switzerland’s Peruvian Colony | Chase Galis, ETH Zurich           

The Bell Palace in Douala: an inquiry into urban and colonial power relations | Cornelia Escher, Kunstakademie Düsseldorf       

Provincial Designs in the Papal Palace: Reading a Set of Nineteenth-Century Architectural Drawings | Mrinalini Rajagopalan, University of Pittsburgh


Civic Centre Revisited: The Politics of an Urban Design Mirage

Chairs: Horacio Torrent, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile; Joaquin Medina Warmburg, KIT – Karlsruher Institut für Technologie

The civic center constituted a comprehensive design strategy that related the urban scale and the architecture. During the first decades of the 20th century, a reading of the metropolitan condition and center of the city was configured in urban planning in relation o the spatial organization that administrative functions could have to represent public power. This idea grew from the advantages proposed by Central European urban planning to improve urban aesthetics to Werner Hegemann’s readings on the possible formal configurations of public facilities.

In the revision of the main ideas of modern architecture produced since the postwar period, the civic center idea was vital in the humanist theories of organic architecture, with the own revisions of the APAO. It had a central place in the debate on the heart of cities until it was conceived as a specific urban design strategy. His theoretical elaborations dominated the discussion and the practice of the urban scale of architecture and assumed the urban scale of the programmatic conditions of public buildings. Its postulates were debated at the CIAM and accompanied the theorizations and applications of Rogers, Sert, Doxiadis, Tyrwhitt, among others.

In tune with the ideas of the new monumentality, civic centers associated program, form, and space with the democratic culture of the city. The association with politics was fundamental in its expansion. His strategy reached large and small cities, renovating decaying areas or promoting urban extensions. It was postulated as a spatial argument in the experiences of the New Towns. It was in the new administrative capitals that emerged from decolonization, where it consisted of a hope design for integrating architecture with society. It had Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Arab world as its testing ground. The civic center became an international urban design paradigm built or projected in Guatemala City, Islamabad, Boston, Skopje, Bogotá, Agadir, Addis Ababa, La Pampa, and Bagdad. Its application in countless cases showed its scope and limitations.

This session promotes the consideration of the historical experience of civic centers in relation to architecture, politics, and society; its temporary validity and decline as a monumental argument in the complexity of the history of architecture and urban design.

We will accept papers proposing case studies beyond a substantial base presenting original archival information in relation to urban planning scales and architectural works. We aim to receive studies daringly exploring profound interpretations in relation to political issues, architectural practice, and social concerns on urban design and civic centres, preferably favouring alternative, interdisciplinary, and intersectional cultural paths.

Capital design, New Town planning, and the politics of anti-urbanism in Tanzania | Ayala Levin,  University of California, Los Angeles / Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich

Together-Apart: The scattered dissolution of the Swedish Centrum | Adrià Carbonell, KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Between Apartheid and Urban Design: New Civic Centres in South Africa 1940- 1980 | Thomas Patrick Chapman, ETH Zurich

In the far South: Clorindo Testa’s Civic Centre for Santa Rosa, La Pampa | Cláudia Costa Cabral, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul 

Islamabad’s Civic Centre | Kieran Gaya (independent scholar)


Not so Pure: Modern Interior contaminations

Chairs: Ana Tostões, IST- University of Lisbon; Marta Peixoto, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul

The 19th century assisted to a gradual process of profusion of decorative elements in the houses’ interiors, added to the diversity of styles, as well as an increase in the amount of furniture, which began to be organised in a less rigid way, turning much living rooms almost impassable. This accumulation also annoyed hygienists, for whom it meant uncleanness, artists, who believed that the excess of ornaments would destroy art, and moralists, for whom ostentation was inconvenient. Perhaps, more than the quantity, the quality of the elements that overcrowded those interiors was harshly criticized. It was a culture that produced a lot of forgery, from objects to environments. There were replicas of archaeological pieces, oriental carpets, and antique furniture; hothouses of tropical plants, kept at high temperatures in the middle of the European winter, ship cabins that looked like houses, or the opposite, housing interiors that reproduced the interior of ship cabins with view to the sea. It is no coincidence that the word kitsch, from the German verb verkitschen, which means fake or imitation, was introduced into the vocabulary in the middle of that century. The word eclecticism derives from the Greek eklektikós, from eklego, which means “to choose”, also present in the origin of legere, to read, in Latin. To read, thus, to know and to interpret in order to choose. The term eclecticism is also applied to the variety of styles that became current around 1820 and shattered the hegemony of neo-classicism, although the tendency to revive styles from past periods should be more properly called historicism. Given all this, the suppression of excesses and the unity proposed by early 20th century modern architecture seemed to be a necessary balm, like a vital anti-eclecticism antidote. Taking a closer look, however, one can see that the modern house, fully designed by the architects of the time as a gesamkunstwerk, was never devoid of some mixture. In the 1920s, there are oriental carpets in Villa Tugendhat, as well as clay amphorae among the Thonet chairs and purist paintings in Le Corbusier’s houses. By mid-century, Lina Bo Bardi’s Glass House is prolific in mixtures, just as the Eames couple displays a collection of indigenous pieces prominently under the zinc roof of House #8. In the 1960s, the houses designed by Charles Moore for himself come close to exaggeration, flirting with the ex- famous kitsch. What was the subtle coexistence of differences was becoming a trend. But was there ever something as “pure” as the modern house?

In order to discuss the interior architecture and inhabitation we expect to address questions such as private spaces and daily life objects, the way architects and users contribute to their cultural, social and political meaning. We welcome papers that interpret and analyse the domesticity and interiority while considering the relationship between modernity, vernacular and hybridity as fields of historical and theoretical reflection on 20th Century Architectural discourse.

Luis Barragán and the Emotional Interior of His House | Louise Noelle Gras, National Autonomous University of Mexico

Mix or match, Brazilian style. Lucio Costa vs Gregori Warchavchik on modern residential architecture, 1930 | Carlos Eduardo Comas and Marcos Almeida, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul

Landscape, domesticity, and vernacular in modern interiors | Maria Cristina Cabral, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

Beds, Tables, Chairs and Bach | Tim Benton, The Open University

“The architect who designed this house should be killed!” Navigating cultural paradoxes in Olivais modern homes | Zara Ferreira, University of Lisbon


The house types and the type of house: the colonial form for indigenous domesticity

Chairs: Francesca Vita, FAUP; Inês Lima Rodrigues, Iscte – University Institute of Lisbon

Whether it constituted the physical extension of the imperialist projects, a means to discriminate or to influence indigenous way of life and to trigger processes of modernization, the House represented a “Tool of Empire” (Headrick, 1981; King, 1995).

With the aim of “normalizing”, “standardizing” and “domesticating” (T eyssot, 1985) autochthonous way of life, the colonial administration undertook a process of dismantling vernacular forms of domesticity, by both condemning its architecture – its form, its materials, its fundamentals – and also its content – its domestic practices and users –.

It was especially during the first half of the 20th century and in the aftermath of the WWII, that the colonial planning offices designed and redesigned across geographies a diverse range of house types aimed to dwell the indigenous populations in a diverse range of milieu: urban neighbourhoods, rural settlements, military camps. The house types designed suggested models of house and domesticity based on the rhetoric of modernity (Heynen, 2013) which have been shaped and negotiated according to the colonial purposes.

For example, after the end of the Second World War, the house types proposals occasionally brought modernity closer to local realities. The implementation of industrial methods in solving the issue of urban housing resulted in housing typologies for the indigenous populations that showed an apparent compatibility between the modern standards and the interpretation of vernacular features.

This session will focus on the production of house types and the type of house addressed to the indigenous populations by the colonial administrations. We encourage papers that discuss how the house types for the autochthonous populations operated as an agency for the rhetoric of modernization, development and assimilation, but also that unveil processes of appropriation and resistance occurred, how dwellers transformed, resisted or accustomed to the colonial house types and type of house. Finally, the session aims to bring together multiple geographies, especially focusing on the African continent (but not only), in order to begin to discuss whether and how the house types circulated across the colonial administrations and which type of house was collectively shaped, pondering the reasons of it.

Colonial labour housing: a ‘propaganda’ tool? | Beatriz Serrazina, Iscte – University Institute of Lisbon

The maison modèle: colonial imaginaries of model houses and model households in the Belgian Congo (1949-1959) | Igor Bloch, Ghent University / Vrije Universiteit Brussel; Laurence Heindryckx, Université libre de Bruxelles / Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Everywhere a Village: The Experiments of A.E.S. Alcock and IBEC in Designing the Global Rural Home | Dalal Musaed Alsayer, Kuwait University

The Swahili House Typology as Contested Site of Modernization, 1910s-60s | Sebastiaan Loosen, ETH Zurich

South Africa, apartheid and after – the NE 51/9 housing typology and resistance to coloniality | Iain Low, University of Cape Town


Bureaucracy and Architecture in the Nineteenth Century in Europe and its Colonies: A New Paradigm?

Chairs: Richard Wittman, University of California at Santa Barbara; Laura diZerega, San Luis Obispo, CA

Architectural production in Europe became a governmental matter as never before during the nineteenth century, as nation-states came to see their built environments as instruments of nation-building. Powerful bureaucracies were developed to ensure that new public architecture and planning in both city and country, both at home and in colonial contexts, announced the state’s conception of the nation. In so doing, these bureaucracies were able to rely on some of the most celebrated architects of the century—men like Karl Friedrich Schinkel, Henri Labrouste, Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, John Soane, and John Nash.

Scholarly inquiry at the intersection of bureaucracy and European architectural history has yielded important work at the level of the nation-state, but it has yet to stray far from the classic Weberian understanding of bureaucratic operations as top-down, impartial, and rational. Post-Weberian reconsiderations of bureaucracy have instead stressed its function as a tool of discipline, surveillance, and control, while recent scholarship has demonstrated that bureaucracy was not only messy from the top down, but also surprisingly porous from the bottom up. Citizens subjected to bureaucratic interventions often contested their government’s actions through negotiation, persuasion, inertia, professional or specialized knowledge, and the strength of their social networks.

This panel is interested in extending this work into the architectural history of the long nineteenth century, both in Europe and its colonies, and invites papers that explore how state service could draw architects into new kinds of negotiations with new groups of architectural stakeholders, from civil servants and municipal officials to the members of the communities who would live with and use their buildings. How might the study of the bureaucratized built environment shed new light on the unintended consequences of government intervention, including its potential to stimulate popular engagement, provoke activism, and even bring about open conflict? How did the bureaucratic administration of architecture provide new discursive spaces in which citizens (or subjects), architects, institutions, and rulers alike might negotiate public architectural environments? To what extent can the historic specificity of nineteenth- century European architecture generally be sought in its absorption into the dialogic, formalized procedures of bureaucratic exchange? Just as the transformation of the bourgeois public sphere during the eighteenth century opened up new opportunities for citizens to influence official architectural culture, might nineteenth-century state bureaucracies be considered a next step in that history of development?

Closed Communication: Britain’s Postal Bureaucracy and Building Imperial Statehood, 1880–1915 | Alex Bremner, University of Edinburgh

Doctors, Chemists, and Military Engineers as the Designers of the First Modern Greek Loutropolis | Georgia Daskalaki (independent scholar)

1856: Public Works and Emergent Bureaucracy in Australia | Nathan Etherington, University of Technology Sydney

The City and Its Officials: Authors of the New Prague | Josef Holeček, Czech Technical University in Prague


Data Narratives of Architectural Modernity

Chairs: Theodora Vardouli and Eliza Pertigkiozoglou, McGill University

This session interrogates the relationship between architectural data and narratives as a way to critically engage with the architectural historiography of modernity. Data have historically enabled the bureaucracies of modern states and their architectural manifestations, fuelled new decision-making practices and legitimacy regimes, and shaped the epistemic plateaus on which they operate. These “morsels of information,” as media historian Lisa Gitelman suggests, are not to be taken as a matter of computers, but instead of disciplines and practices. Data reflect how epistemic and professional communities –architecture being a prime example– have historically organized their objects, methods, and standards. Data, in this sense, are not given, universal, or “raw”, but captured, contingent, and “cooked.” This session proposes to look at data as and through narratives – as curated fictions and, following historian Mary Morgan’s definition of narrative, as collective acts of sense-making that establish relationships between subjects, objects, events, and settings.

Recent scholarship has grappled with contested affinities between the misty terms “data” and “narrative,” declared at once inimical and complementary in knowledge production processes. In reflective accounts of history-writing practices, scholars have challenged the mutual constitution of data and narratives within the archive, and have proposed counter- histories by flipping their roles and treating narratives as a form of data, or by asserting data’s generativity for storytelling. In this session, we ask: how does architectural history as a narrative- making and -understanding discipline contend with architectural data as an historical category, as an archival condition, and as a methodological challenge?

We invite historical scholarship on narratives that have endorsed, or emerged from, practices of defining, extracting, and using data in architecture’s long modernity. Within this larger inquiry, we also welcome works that focus on digital electronic computers as data- processing machines. The interest is less in historical computational methods in architecture and more in how communities of knowledge and practice made sense of data extraction and processing methods in specific settings. Examining these narratives can expose data’s complicity in perpetuating gender, racial, and class injustices. It can also prompt whose narratives have been foregrounded in histories of architectural data and whose have been left out. Together with critical historical accounts of architectural data narratives, we seek scholarship that tactically mobilizes data as a vehicle toward justice and reparation. As data activist scholarship and practice has recently highlighted, data, under different regimes of ownership and use, need not suppress, but can also activate voices of historically marginalized and oppressed communities. Inspired by such perspectives, the session also welcomes historical work that enacts or historicizes deployments of data toward emancipatory goals, to dismantle master-narratives about buildings, architectural spaces, and technologies.

Coded Objects: The Forms of Proto-Algorithmic Thinking | Anna-Maria Meister,  Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max Planck Institute and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology 

Administering Architectural Variation at the Office of Construction, 1852-1861 | Ultan Byrne, Columbia University 

The Data-Fueled Narratives of California’s “Educational Frontier” at Irvine, 1959-1964 | Sina Brueckner-Amin, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology / saai Archive

Populism Without Democracy: Urban Modeling in Post-1970s Britain | Maroš Krivý, Estonian Academy of Arts / Canadian Centre for Architecture

If we have data, do we need the math? | Philippe Morel, University College London 

Digital Design Data in the Contemporary Architectural Archive | Emily Pugh, Getty Research Institute 

Data Entry, Drawing, and the Self-Narration of Architectural History | Shota Vashakmadze, University of California, Los Angeles 

“Raw Data” is an Aesthetic Category | Yanni Loukissas, Georgia Institute of Technology


Architectural Histories after the Global Turn

Chairs: Paul Walker, University of Melbourne; Macarena de la Vega de León, IE University

The writing of architectural history shifted with the turn of the twenty-first century. Theoretical and methodological reassessments and the impact of postcolonial theories on architectural scholarship challenged the previously accepted canon and made the development of global histories of architecture both urgent and problematic. These calls for a reconsideration of the writing and teaching of architectural history generated edited volumes and authored books with global aspirations. In addition, online resources appeared that sought to break free from the canon and its categories. By 2015, there was already a re-assessment of the contributions to the global architectural history discourse which engaged with two debates: on the one hand, the methodological and disciplinary (meta)debate regarding the writing of architectural histories, and, on the other, the debate on the appropriate content of architectural education at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level. A series of events and sessions at major international conferences of scholarly societies have continued to reframe global architectural history – as well as its teaching – and to rethink world histories since then.

Some of the latest additions to the field are the new editions of two canonical works: Sir Banister Fletcher’s Global History of Architecture (2019), now an anthology edited by Murray Fraser, and Kenneth Frampton’s Modern Architecture. A Critical History (2020). While the former still prioritises European and American architectures, its combination of large geographies and cultures – written for the most part by scholars with deep regional expertise – explores transnational exchanges. The latter includes an entire new part devoted to world architecture and divided into four large geographical regions with chapters on individual countries, but this is predominantly descriptive; the theoretical core of Modern Architecture remains as written in 1980. Edited collections of essays continue to be productive as demonstrated by The Handbook of Contemporary Indigenous Architecture (2018), Race and Modern Architecture (2020), Writing Architectural History. Evidence and Narrative in the Twenty-First Century (2021), and Rethinking Global Modernism: Architectural Historiography and the Postcolonial (2022). Symposia continue to be just as productive, as demonstrated by ‘Australasia and the Global Turn in Architectural History,’ organised at the University of Melbourne in April 2022, initiating intergenerational, transnational, and cross-cultural dialogues to be continued within Australasia and beyond.

It is precisely beyond Australasia that we want to turn in this roundtable. We aim to engage with the aftermath of over twenty years of formulating, reassessing, reformulating, and implementing the global, with its limitations and challenges. Through problematic temporal and geographical divides, the global continues to fail in matters of equity, diversity, dislocation, and inclusion. As Mark Jarzombek put it back in 2017, we continue to see the absences in the global; a promise that it is yet to be fulfilled… if ever. We call for papers that can help draft a bigger picture of the state of the discipline today with its ‘other connections’ and that may anticipate next steps, tracing both differences and alternative confluences.

Provincializing Global Architectural History | Petra Brouwer, University of Amsterdam 

Shuffle and deal again | Fernando Martínez Nespral, University of Buenos Aires

Rethinking the “Medieval” in Global Architectural History” | Shiqiao Li, University of Virginia

Oceania: the Nameless Vast Ocean that Connects ArchitectUreS | Charmaine ‘Ilaiū Talei, Waipapa Taumata Rau, The University of Auckland, and Christoph Schnoor, Unitec Te Pūkenga 

Achievements and Challenges of Writing Modern Chinese Architectural History after the Global Turn | Yinrui Xie, University of Lincoln

Writing from the South of the South: From challenging categories to exercising dissidence | Natalia Solano Meza, Universidad de Costa Rica

A world after its own image | Mark Crinson, Birkbeck, University of London



Chairs: Christina E. Crawford, Emory University; Richard J. Williams, University of Edinburgh

For most of the past thirty years, cities have been ascendent. The United Nations famously declared in 2009 that for the first time in human history, more than half of the world’s population was living in cities. In the wealthy northern hemisphere, urban population decline was dramatically reversed, and cities were again understood as the engines of economic growth and the centres of culture. All of that came under question in 2020 when the covid-19 pandemic put the city’s very basis for existence in question. The news media was for a time full of images of empty streets and squares, devoid of the activity that had heralded their return. Central city offices emptied as workers were instructed to work from home; urban transport networks saw dramatic falls in ridership; stories about the flight from cities abounded. It seemed for a time that those who could leave cities would do so. There was some data to back it up. In the UK, Office for National Statistics figures suggested London might be shrinking. The city was arguably in question for the first time in a generation. What better time to revisit historical anti-urban theories, images, and material realities?

Architectural history and theory is full of examples of anti-urbanism: Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City; Soviet disurbanists’ diffuse linear settlements flanked by countryside that met Engels’s call for urban dissolution under socialism; Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broadacre City, which sought to dissolve the traditional city through new transport networks; US suburbs produced by a Cold War military doctrine to disperse civilian populations; purposefully decentralized industry and development in Maoist China; the varied experiences of the British New Towns, underwritten by the shared horror of nineteenth century industrial urbanism; Western experiments in communal living in the 1970s from Arcosanti on the edge of Phoenix, to the Centre for Alternative Technology in mid-Wales. Perhaps even the flurry of interest in Martian colonisation in the early 21st century is evidence of a new form of anti- urbanism.

This session invites proposals on intentional anti-urbanism from any cultural or historical context. We are interested in paper proposals that explore the forms and politics of anti-urbanism, whether from the left (e.g. the USSR or the UK) or the right (e.g. US military interest in the topic) or from green movements and other parts of the political spectrum. How has anti-urbanism been formulated, imagined, and designed? What does anti-urbanism look like? Are we – as seemed to be the case in 2020 – at the beginning of a new anti-urban phase? If so, how might historical anti-urbanisms inform contemporary thinking about the city and its alternatives? We welcome papers that explore these and other questions in a transcultural and transhistorical dialogue.

Romantic Anti-Urbanism: Artist Colonies in Germany between 1880 and 1910 | Deborah Barnstone, University of Sydney

Low-Rise in the Tech-Slurbs: Silicon Valley’s urbanophobia | Claude Dutson, Royal College of Art and University College London

Dismantling Beijing: Jing-Jin-Ji and the Chinese Post-Metropolis | Samuel Koh, Bauhaus University

Ruralism as opposed to urbanism: Wright’s Vision of an Organic Capitalism | Catherine Maumi, Ecole nationale supérieure d’architecture Paris La Villette

Ambivalent Anti-Urbanism – the ‘Eco Estates’ in 1980s West Germany | Florian Urban, Glasgow School of Art

Living in the desert in times of collapse | Stathis Yeros, University of Florida

Machines for Settling: The Provisional Architectures of Colonialism 

Chairs: Adrian Anagnost, Tulane University; Jesse Lockard, University of Oxford

In his 1944 essay “The Machine for Living in 18th-Century West Africa,” George Kubler foregrounded the architecture of colonialism as a crucial precursor for modern, rationalist design. Kubler’s essay discussed a climatically responsive, prefabricated house built in the 1790s for British settlers on the coast of Sierra Leone. Based on existing practices in West African architecture, the house was a raised structure, designed to move according to the seasons, with cooling and ventilation technology rooted in the natural world. Kubler positioned this example as a pre-history for Le Corbusier’s five points and Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion House, fitting it within established art historical evaluative criteria and progressive narratives. West African architecture is rendered invisible by absorption into the European canon — and architecture’s participation in the process of colonial settlement is occluded.

This panel frames architectures of colonialism not as machines for living but as machines for settling. Rather than analyzing monumentalized architecture that visually declares the permanence of colonial presence, we seek decolonizing examinations of the interstitial, often temporary, architecture that effected settlement. This form of architecture often disappears because individual buildings are dismantled, or because they become permanent — or because historiographical teleologies frame them as mere experiments in the labs of empire on the path to architectural modernism. Settling is often understood as a process of arriving at a naturalized permanence — and continually maintaining it. The creation of that permanence has historically been mediated through moveable, impermanent architecture and construction technologies (Herbert 1972, Huppatz 2010, Tavares 2020). Yet, architectural scholarship generally has only a limited sense of colonialism’s crucially provisional architectures and the concrete facticity of settlement’s design techniques.

Recent interventions in the field have centered mobility in the study of colonialism (Ballantyne 2014, Mann 2016, Shvartzberg Carrió 2019, Katz 2022). Building on this important work, our panel aims to enlarge the corpus of case studies that investigate impermanent and in-between structures in histories of settler colonialism, broadly conceived. The panel is intended to be geographically and chronologically expansive and we seek methodologically diverse scholarship that gives detailed accounts of how such structures were made, altered, and used; papers that center the importance of Indigenous knowledge; papers that relate settlement architecture to particularities of place and landscape. Case studies might address literal impermanence, as well as historiographical and pedagogical concerns, such as the non-recognition of certain architectural histories; evaluative criteria that center tectonic and stylistic stability; graphic norms of the discipline that deprecate other forms of evidence; accounts of rhetorical forms of erasure that naturalize colonial presence. Permanence is an architectural technique that has its own history. To denaturalize colonial settlement, architectural history must defamiliarize permanence.

Temporary but Permanent: Governance and the Prefabricated House in Colonial Australia | Philip Goad and Julie Willis, University of Melbourne

Settling Whitefield: Property and Permanence in a ‘Garden City’ | Sonali Dhanpal, Princeton University

A Light-Footed Rush of Settlement: The AirForm Colony in Dakar, 1948-1956 | Lucia Allais, Columbia University

Lightweight Building in a Time of Building Durability: A Scheme for the Sahel | Yetunde Olaiya, Pratt Institute

Morphological Settlement: Mechanisms for Inducing Israel’s Colonial Landscape | Alona Nitzan-Shiftan and Cheyn Lambert, Technion IIT

Reinventing the Conical Dwelling in the Soviet Union: Between the Form of Settlement and the Fetish of Form | Alla Vronskaya, University of Kassel / CASVA