The City on Display: Architecture Festivals and the Urban Commons reflects on the biennials, triennials, and other festivals of architecture and design that have been held over the last two decades, as they expand and transform in response to the exigencies of ‘planetary urbanisation’. Joel Robinson examines the development of these large-scale, international, and perennial exhibitions as they address such challenges as urban regeneration, heritage preservation, climate change, and the migration crisis.
Homing in on examples of festivals in Venice, Rotterdam, Oslo, Tallinn, Sharjah, Seoul, Shenzhen, and Hong Kong, the author describes how they alter the public spaces that host them, either through civic boosterism and gentrification, on the one hand, or through a reassertion of the urban commons and the right to the city, on the other hand. He attempts to thematise the architecture festival's relationship with the city and interrogate its potential as a forum for global debate about the emergencies of the urban condition.
This book will be beneficial for students and academics of architecture and urbanism, and especially those who have an interest in how the city gets exhibited at such festivals and even reimagined as something other than it currently is.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1. Festival City: Proving Grounds for the Commons 2. Agonistic City: Regenerations and/or Reclamations 3. Capitalocene City: Tools for Circularity and Degrowth 4. Refuge City: Cultural Advocates for Global Citizenship Postscript
Joel Robinson is an Associate Lecturer at The Open University in the UK.