Public space and its values : the changing role of history and memory in the contemporary urban artifact

Lawrence, Julie. (2007). Public space and its values : the changing role of history and memory in the contemporary urban artifact B.A. Thesis, School of Geography, Planning & Env Management, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Lawrence, Julie.
Thesis Title Public space and its values : the changing role of history and memory in the contemporary urban artifact
School, Centre or Institute School of Geography, Planning & Env Management
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2007
Thesis type B.A. Thesis
Supervisor Pedro Guedes
Andrew Leach
Total pages 63
Language eng
Subjects 1201 Architecture
Formatted abstract

The search for meaning in architecture has prompted considerable debate on the relationship between architecture and history, as illustrated by the Modernist discourse of the 20th century. That architecture can derive meaning from its relationship to history is facilitated by the capacity of memory to be captured in the built form. The use of memory in this context values the continuity of architecture to connect the past time of memory’s recollection with the present time of its expression. The first Chapter outlines Aldo Rossi‘s The Architecture of the City which explains how the persistence of urban forms contributes to an understanding of the city, employing the concept of collective memory to both its understanding and as a mechanism for its design. Rossi’s theorisation of architecture isolates values and meaning in the historical artifacts of the city, contributing to a specific reading of its form based in history, and reliant on the parameter of time for its significance. The capacity to infuse these values into the contemporary urban project is explored through two case studies of public spaces, both of international significance to the city’s they constitute. The first, Piazza San Marco in Venice affirms Rossi’s historical reading of the city and as an ideal urban artifact clarifies the relationship between architecture and history through the manifestation of memory in its built form. The Piazza’s role in the urban renovatio illustrates the importance of Rossi’s values to an understanding of the city’s physical and ideological structure. The second case study, Federation Square in Melbourne is presented as a contemporary urban project that has neither the time nor the capacity to manifest memory in its form as measured in the Piazza San Marco. Rossi’s reading of the city qualifies the value of Federation Square to Melbourne not in its built form but in its virtual image, recognising the challenge for contemporary architecture to find meaning by using memory as a mechanism for design. Federation Square reveals the value of alternative methods of representing the urban image, within the extended spatial and temporal boundaries of the contemporary city. What emerges is the significance of continuity in architecture to provide meaning through memory, and in the absence of time, a firm decision to use memory as a mechanism for design in order to generate meaning in its form.  


Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (non-RHD) - UQ staff and students only
 
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Created: Thu, 04 Apr 2013, 10:31:31 EST by Mr Yun Xiao on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service