Search results for: postmodern-architecture-in-socialist-poland

Postmodern Architecture in Socialist Poland

Author : Florian Urban
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"Garish churches, gabled slab blocks, neo-historical tenements - this book is about these and other architectural oddities that one would not expect under an authoritarian socialist regime. It is about the committed individuals that rendered them possible in spite of repressive politics and persistent shortage. It is about a very different background of postmodern architecture, far removed from the debates over Robert Venturi, Philip Johnson or Prince Charles-a context in which postmodernism stood not for world-weary irony, but for individualized resistance against a collectivist dictatorship, a yearning for truth and spiritual values, and a discourse on distinctiveness and national identity. Postmodern Architecture in Socialist Poland argues that this new architecture was more than just a symptom of the beginning political and economic transformation. Rather, it was itself an agent of change. The changing style and priorities in architecture, the most public and expensive of the visual arts, contributed to incremental change beneath what otherwise appeared to be a rigid authoritarian regime. The book analyses the dynamics of this change. It shows that to a large extent postmodern architecture was promoted by dedicated people who took advantage of cracks in the system. These included not only architects but also public servants and priests, acting courageously without explicit support by the rulers, despite tight economic circumstances. Their work did more than just tweak the appearance of the built environment, it changed society in late-socialist Poland and continues to do so today. This book will be of great interest to students and scholars in architectural history, postmodernism, and socialist history"--

Postmodern Architecture in Socialist Poland

Author : Florian Urban
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Garish churches, gabled panel blocks, neo-historical tenements—this book is about these and other architectural oddities that emerged in Poland between 1975 and 1989, a period characterised by the decline of the authoritarian socialist regime and waves of political protest. During that period, committed architects defied repressive politics and persistent shortages, and designed houses and churches which adapted eclectic historical forms and geometric volumes, and were based on traditional typologies. These buildings show a very different background of postmodernism, far removed from the debates over Robert Venturi, Philip Johnson, or Prince Charles in Western Europe and North America—a context in which postmodern architecture stood not for world-weary irony in an economically saturated society, but for individualised counter-propositions to a collectivist ideology, for a yearning for truth and spiritual values, and for a discourse on distinctiveness and national identity. Postmodern Architecture in Socialist Poland argues that this new architecture marked the beginning of socio-political transformation and at the same time showed postmodernism's reconciliatory potential. In light of massive historical ruptures and wartime destruction, these buildings successfully responded to the contradictory desires for historical continuity and acknowledgment of rupture and loss. Next to international ideas, the architects took up domestic traditions, such as the ideas of the Polish school of historic conservation and long-standing national-patriotic narratives. They thus contributed to the creation of a built environment and intellectual climate that have been influential to date. This book will be of great interest to students and scholars interested in postmodern architecture and urban design, as well as in the socio-cultural background and transformative potential of architecture under socialism.

Resisting Postmodern Architecture

Author : Stylianos Giamarelos
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Since its first appearance in 1981, critical regionalism has enjoyed a celebrated worldwide reception. The 1990s increased its pertinence as an architectural theory that defends the cultural identity of a place resisting the homogenising onslaught of globalisation. Today, its main principles (such as acknowledging the climate, history, materials, culture and topography of a specific place) are integrated in architects’ education across the globe. But at the same time, the richer cross-cultural history of critical regionalism has been reduced to schematic juxtapositions of ‘the global’ with ‘the local’. Retrieving both the globalising branches and the overlooked cross-cultural roots of critical regionalism, Resisting Postmodern Architecture resituates critical regionalism within the wider framework of debates around postmodern architecture, the diverse contexts from which it emerged, and the cultural media complex that conditioned its reception. In so doing, it explores the intersection of three areas of growing historical and theoretical interest: postmodernism, critical regionalism and globalisation. Based on more than 50 interviews and previously unpublished archival material from six countries, the book transgresses existing barriers to integrate sources in other languages into anglophone architectural scholarship. In so doing, it shows how the ‘periphery’ was not just a passive recipient, but also an active generator of architectural theory and practice. Stylianos Giamarelos challenges long-held ‘central’ notions of supposedly ‘international’ discourses of the recent past, and outlines critical regionalism as an unfinished project apposite for the 21st century on the fronts of architectural theory, history and historiography.

Second World Postmodernisms

Author : Vladimir Kulic
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If postmodernism is indeed 'the cultural logic of late capitalism', why did typical postmodernist themes like ornament, colour, history and identity find their application in the architecture of the socialist Second World? How do we explain the retreat into paper architecture and theoretical discussion in societies still nominally devoted to socialist modernization? Exploring the intersection of two areas of growing scholarly interest - postmodernism and the architecture of the former socialist world - this edited collection stakes out new ground in charting architecture's various transformations in the 1970s and 80s. Fourteen essays together explore the question of whether or not architectural postmodernism had a specific Second World variant. The collection demonstrates both the unique nature of Second World architectural phenomena and also assesses connections with western postmodernism. The case studies cover the vast geographical scope from Eastern Europe to China and Cuba. They address a wealth of aesthetic, discursive and practical phenomena, interpreting them in the broader socio-political context of the last decades of the Cold War. The result provides a greatly expanded map of recent architectural history, which redefines postmodernist architecture in a more theoretically comprehensive and global way.

Prussia in the Historical Culture of the German Democratic Republic

Author : Marcus Colla
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No example demonstrates the fluidity of the past within the German Democratic Republic more powerfully than the history of the Prussian state. Initially attacked in East German official histories as the historical engine of German militarism and reaction, Prussia underwent a remarkable transformation in official and public memory from around the end of the 1970s. This was the so-called 'Prussia-Renaissance', in which, for the first time, the East German state began to recognise and even celebrate figures from Prussian history who had not served a 'progressive' agenda. But the 'Prussia-Renaissance' was also a political and cultural phenomenon with a wide public resonance. The 'Prussia-Renaissance' may have been a relatively short-lived phenomenon, but it evidently opened a deep vein in the historical memory of the German Democratic Republic that defied reduction to 'high politics' alone. This book asks why. Using the case study of Prussia, Marcus Colla presents a multi-perspective approach to the way that a distinctive 'historical culture' was constructed in the German Democratic Republic. It not only evaluates the roles played by political figures, historians, and cultural elites, but also heritage preservationists, exhibition curators, heimat museums, television producers, novelists and playwrights, and singers - the purveyors of what we might more generally term 'popular culture'. In essence, Colla poses four fundamental questions for our understanding of life, politics and culture in communist East Germany: how was history there made? How was it understood? How was it contested? And how was it used?

Architecture State Modernism and Cultural Nationalism in the Apartheid Capital

Author : Hilton Judin
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This book is the first comprehensive investigation of the architecture of the apartheid state in the period of rapid economic growth and political repression from 1957 to 1966 when buildings took on an ideological role that was never remote from the increasingly dominant administrative, legislative and policing mechanisms of the regime. It considers how this process reflected the usurpation of a regional modernism and looks to contribute to wider discourses on international postwar modernism in architecture. Buildings in Pretoria that came to embody ambitions of the apartheid state for industrialisation and progress serve as case studies. These were widely acclaimed projects that embodied for apartheid officials the pursuit of modernisation but carried latent apprehensions of Afrikaners about their growing economic prospects and cultural estrangement in Africa. It is a less known and marginal story due to the dearth of material and documents buried in archives and untranslated documents. Many of the documents, drawings and photographs in the book are unpublished and include classified material and photographs from the National Nuclear Research Centre, negatives of 1960s from Pretoria News and documents and pamphlets from Afrikaner Broederbond archives. State architecture became the most iconic public manifestation of an evolving expression of white cultural identity as a new generation of architects in Pretoria took up the challenge of finding form to their prospects and beliefs. It was an opportunistic faith in Afrikaners who urgently needed to entrench their vulnerable and contested position on the African continent. The shift from provincial town to apartheid capital was swift and relentless. Little was left to stand in the way of the ambitions and aim of the state as people were uprooted and forcibly relocated, structures torn down and block upon block of administration towers and slabs erected across Pretoria. This book will be of great interest to students and scholars of architectural history as well as those with an interest in postcolonial studies, political science and social anthropology.

Re Framing Identities

Author : Ákos Moravánszky
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From 1970–1990, architecture experienced a revision as part of the post-modern movement. The critical attitude to the functionalistic Moderne style and the influence of semiotics and philosophical trends, such as phenomenology, on architectural theory led to an increased interest in its history, expression, perception, and context. In addition, architectural heritage and the care of architectural monuments gained importance. This development also increasingly challenged the ideologically based division between East and West. Instead of emphasizing the differences, the search was for a joint cultural heritage. The contributions in this volume question terms such as "Moderne" and "post-modern", and show how architecture could again represent local, regional, and national identity.

Building Practice in the Dutch East Indies

Author : David Hutama Setiadi
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This book reveals the ‘epistemic imposition’ of architectural ideas and practices by colonists from the Netherlands in the Dutch East Indies from the late-19th century onwards, exploring the ways in which this came to shape the profession up to the present day in what is now known as Indonesia. The author investigates the scope of these interventions by Dutch colonial agents in relation to existing Javanese building practices, pursuing two main lines of enquiry. The first is to examine the methods of dissemination of Dutch-taught technical knowledge and skills across the Dutch East Indies. The second is to scrutinise the effects of this dissemination upon the formation of architectural knowledge and practice within the colony. Throughout this book, the argument is made that what took place in architecture in the Dutch East Indies involved a process of disseminating building knowledge as a form of ‘epistemic imposition’ upon the indigenous citizens of the colony – in other words, as an effective instrument of Dutch colonial power. This book will be of interest to architecture academics and students interested in developing a broader global understanding of architecture, especially those interested in decolonising the teaching of architectural history and theory.

Architecture in Global Socialism

Author : Łukasz Stanek
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How socialist architects, planners, and contractors worked collectively to urbanize and develop the Global South during the Soviet era In the course of the Cold War, architects, planners, and construction companies from socialist Eastern Europe engaged in a vibrant collaboration with those in West Africa and the Middle East in order to bring modernization to the developing world. Architecture in Global Socialism shows how their collaboration reshaped five cities in the Global South: Accra, Lagos, Baghdad, Abu Dhabi, and Kuwait City. Łukasz Stanek describes how local authorities and professionals in these cities drew on Soviet prefabrication systems, Hungarian and Polish planning methods, Yugoslav and Bulgarian construction materials, Romanian and East German standard designs, and manual laborers from across Eastern Europe. He explores how the socialist development path was adapted to tropical conditions in Ghana in the 1960s, and how Eastern European architectural traditions were given new life in 1970s Nigeria. He looks at how the differences between socialist foreign trade and the emerging global construction market were exploited in the Middle East in the closing decades of the Cold War. Stanek demonstrates how these and other practices of global cooperation by socialist countries—what he calls socialist worldmaking—left their enduring mark on urban landscapes in the postcolonial world. Featuring an extensive collection of previously unpublished images, Architecture in Global Socialism draws on original archival research on four continents and a wealth of in-depth interviews. This incisive book presents a new understanding of global urbanization and its architecture through the lens of socialist internationalism, challenging long-held notions about modernization and development in the Global South.

Political Postmodernisms

Author : LIDIA. KLEIN
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Political Postmodernisms shows how postmodern architecture in the unlikely settings of Chile during the neoliberal dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet and Poland during the late socialist Polish People's Republic undermine an established narrative of architecture theory and history.