Arquitectura Viva
Thursday, October 01, 2020

Arquitectura Viva 81


H&dM en París, Nouvel en Viena, Siza en Maastricht
XI-XII 2001

European Cohabitation. The strict rules of public housing and the commercial nature of private developments do not encourage a necessary debate on the residential project, whose definition has to be sought first outside architecture, in the demands of a changing society for which simply inhabiting has new connotations. Competitions such as Europan were in their day pioneers at presenting a continental perspective of housing, and that territory which is dissolving its frontiers is today the inescapable starting point when it comes to identifying needs, contrasting experiences and searching for alternatives.


Ernst Hubeli
Indefinite and Particular
Homelessness as Home
David Cohn
Residential Landscapes
Europan VI: a Balance
Ten Spanish Projects
From Baracaldo to Valencia
From Portugal to Germany

Cover Story  

Urban Fabric. New housing regenerates the old centers of the city by introducing a dose of variety amidst homogeneous environments; and the introduction of residential uses rejuvenates obsolete or peripheral industrial areas.


Herzog & de Meuron, Paris
BKK-3, Vienna
Van der Pol, Amsterdam
Jean Nouvel, Vienna

Friendly Types. From the slab to the block, the traditional forms of habitation are improvable, in their relationship with the urban context and in the light of imperatives such as energy saving or the new domestic lifestyles..   Burkard & Meyer, Baden
Gert Wingårdh, Malmö
Manuel Brullet, El Prat
Fink & Jocher, Coburg
Singular Prisms. The city is built with norms and is marked by exceptions; wrapped up in seductive skins, the residential prisms lend themselves as much to uniformity as to a variety of shapes and sizes.
  Souto de Moura, Maia
Nieto & Sobejano, Seville
Álvaro Siza, Maastricht
Claus y Kaan, Almere
Views and Reviews  

Competition and Consensus. Chipperfield has won the competition to renovate Teruel’s historic facade; and Moneo was chosen, by popular vote, in the one convened to build the new headquarters for Cantabria’s government.

  Art / Culture 

Luis Fernández-Galiano
Chipperfield in Teruel
Vicente Patón
Moneo in Santander

Galicians of Madrid. The lives of Antonio Palacios and Antonio Flórez, coetaneous and Galicians, only have Madrid in common, who owes them, respectively, some of its most significant public and educational architectures.   Javier Gª-Gutiérrez Mosteiro
The Madrid of Palacios
Francisco Burgos
Flórez, Lay Classrooms
From Exegesis to Repertoire. Charles Jencks updates his book on Le Corbusier; the catalog of monographs on Spanish authors increases; and a dictionary of terms that describe new architectural realities appears.
  Focho’s Cartoon
Glenn Murcutt
Various Authors
Recent Projects 

Raising the Curtain. The bright metallic shell by Tschumi in Rouen houses a rock music concert hall and becomes an urban landmark; the delicate interplay of light skins by Jakob & MacFarlane renews the image of the Pont Audemer theater; the expressive assemblage of parts around a spiral ramp by Bolles & Wilson provides another building for the mythical Luxor theater of Amsterdam; and the spectacular hall by Ricciotti for the Philharmonic of Brandenburg contributes to preserve part of the built heritage of Potsdam.

  Technique / Style 

Bernard Tschumi
Zenith, Rouen
Jakob & MacFarlane
Theater, Pont Audemer
Bolles & Wilson
Teatro Luxor, Amsterdam
Rudy Ricciotti
Concert Hall, Potsdam

To close, a commentary by Luis Fernández-Galiano on the relationship between the leisure industry, art and architecture, with the design by Koolhaas of the Guggenheim and the Hermitage museums in Las Vegas as backdrop.   Products
Photography, Software, Fairs
Luis Fernández-Galiano
The Show Must Go On
Luis Fernández-Galiano

European Cohabitation

The Europe of the single currency is an architectural project: it requires political firmitas, social utilitas and cultural venustas. The new bills are illustrated with buildings and public works that represent at once the singular heritage of the old continent and its current collective project to build a common home, laying out bridges and opening windows over obsolete frontiers. Standing between the past and the future, this historic project has a political dimension that is also territorial and urban, because it affects the physical conformation of European landscapes; a social dimension that is demographic and functional, because it refers to the demand of infrastructures and services of the continent’s population; and a cultural dimension that is, in the end, both communicative and symbolic, because it lies within the context of shared perceptions and values. More than a market and less than a state, the Europe of the euro is an open, hopeful and tangled process.


In this house under construction we live now, still uncertain of its final dimension or inhabitants, but reasonably sure that we must try to keep the project from derailing on the obstacle of euroskepticism. We cohabit Europe while we build it, and this ambiguous term refers at once to the temporal nature of the arrangement, to the will to live together in the territory, and to the collective forms of housing that characterize European urbanity. This cohabitation moves around students and manners, mixes people and languages, blurrs national identities and nurtures a new nucleus of institutional and emotional reference. And in this communal melting pot, European cities and housing acquire a renewed pertinence, a stratified heritage of tradition and experiences with which the young European architects that compete in the coral laboratory of Europan and the accomplished professionals that swiftly sail around the geography of the continent critically dialog.

The construction of Europe has, indeed, as many shadows in the past as uncertainties in the future. Carlomagno rests in a peaceful penumbra that still has not reached the mercenary armies of Charles the Fifth, the revolutionary troops of Bonaparte or the armored divisions of Hitler, three hegemonic projects of Europe that the historical memory still has not been able to redeem. On its part, the current project suffers from an insufficient democratic legitimacy, an excessively dispersed leadership and a blurred definition of objectives, three wounds that weaken the autonomy of Europe before the increasing economic and military strength of our Atlantic partner, a United States that has responded to 11 September with a tide of patriotic fervor that has substituted subordination for multilateralism. Whether this increasingly evident ancillary role will be compatible with European cohabitation is as hard to predict as the future exchange rate of that newly born currency whose bills rustle between our fingers.

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