Geschichte oder Rekonstruktön: Victor López Cotelo. Vortrag: Dichte Leere

Feduchi, Luis (2010). Geschichte oder Rekonstruktön: Victor López Cotelo. Vortrag: Dichte Leere, Ins Leere gebaut - Built into the Void, , Instituto Cervantes, Berlin, Germany.

Author Feduchi, Luis
Title Geschichte oder Rekonstruktön: Victor López Cotelo. Vortrag: Dichte Leere
Institution Instituto Cervantes, Berlin, Germany
Seminar Series Ins Leere gebaut - Built into the Void
Publication date 2010-02-16
Total pages 1 Event coordination
Language spa
Subject Curated or Produced Substantial Public Exhibition/Event - Exhibition/Event
Abstract/Summary With the rebuilding of the Berlin City Palace under way, the debate about the reconstruction of the city has taken a new turn, a turn not derived from international or local concerns, but rather from national ones. As may be seen by the results of the competition to rebuild the Palace, the occasion was not seized upon in order to further the official strategy of the city, also known as “critical reconstruction”. Rather, it was – and remains – an obstinate attempt, almost certainly by the German Federal Government, to erase history in the name of history: or in other words, to dismantle the socialist Palast der Republik in order to rebuild the Prussian Palace destroyed by American bombs in 1945 and demolished by the GDR government in 1950 once its reconstruction was disavowed. Whether it is right or wrong, the decision to rebuild the Palace poses an interesting question in the realm of architecture. When we rebuild something, that is, when we bring to the present something from the past which has been absent, are we taking a historical stand, or are we doing the opposite, that is, acting a-historically by denying history its own absence? As in the case of Moneo, Victor López Cotelo, architect of a project bearing great thematic resemblance to the one in question (the rebuilding of the military-palace building to house a university institution, the School of Architecture of the University of Granada), abandoned that possibility in order to give rise to his series of interventions within the surroundings of the city of Santiago in Galicia. Cotelo presented the Santiago proposal as a research project, which he was able to confront out of the condition of foreignness that distance provides; the distance that mediates between proto-industrial Galicia and our contemporary world, as well as the distance that separates Cotelo – working in Munich – from all things Spanish. Although López Cotelo emphasized time and again the dense dimension of his idea of the void (highlighted in the title of his lecture Dense Voids), it is also true that his talk dwelled exhaustively on something absolutely crucial: the appreciation of Galician landscape and architectural heritage, not from a conservative or conservationist standpoint, but rather from a perspective that, while equating landscape to language, agrees on the need to preserve it, without necessarily having to resort to an archaic version of it.
Additional Notes English translation: "History or Reconstruction: Victor López Cotelo. Lecture: Dense Voids". Published in "Spanish Architects ABROAD / Arquitectos españoles en el extranjero", Verlag für Architektur.JOVIS 2011. ISBN 9783868591088; 3868591087.

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Created: Tue, 13 Dec 2011, 11:55:56 EST by Fiona Mcalpine on behalf of School of Architecture