Architecture is conflict. Everchanging, it forms or erases our collective memories. With its destruction so are gone memories of our past. How do we rebuilt what was once destroyed? We must construct a new reality. Not re-creation, not construction of a new, but a reconfiguration of the old, leaving a permanent scar. A scar that will remind, yet one that will evolve with time. A living organism that allows for remembrance yet - progress. Architecture must transform. After the 1940 bombing of Rotterdam, a few key culturally valuable buildings that were still standing got demolished as part of grand clearance for the new masterplan. REconfigured/CITY proposes to reflect on this maneuver once more. This time however, instead of enacting a tabula rasa on the damaged tissue of the city, it was preserved, but not simply rebuilt to its original state. The project proposes the evolution of the left-over scar tissue to fit the desired program to the post-war needs. Transforming memories into experience without getting stuck in traumatic moment and also avoiding the forgetting (denying) of the past. Reusing scraps of wreckage, the new healing architecture is formed. One that adapts not only to war but can use passive design for climate change or spatial requirements for future pandemics. The agency to built architecture that is responsive is here and now!
Independent School For The City project
Colored pencil on trace paper, print
Rotterdam, Netherlands