• 20 September - 8 November 2012

    Place. Anthropology of space

The eighth session of Architecture [discussion] Fund presents anthropological approach to architecture and invites to research architecture as a social phenomenon drawing attention to its social background, functioning, and influences. First of all architecture is modeling of the space, and the space is the essential dimension of experience, therefore it is important to understand, what particular physical, sensual, historical or social qualities we are surrounded by, and to figure out, what kind of behavior, movement, feeling and thinking they suggest us. Since Descartes “the space” in Western culture has been understood as an abstract idea, as a tensile void that is to be fulfilled with different physical and social parameters. In reality such kind of abstraction doesn’t exist, as every real space is not detachable from numerous specific features. In recent decades along with criticism of modernist thought arguing against the abstract and universal notion of architecture as form and function, the term “place” became more and more prominent in contemporary space studies. “The place” is a concrete, local, colorful and active space, which restricts or encourages, controls or enables, inspires or oppresses; it can be loud, comforting, joyful or silent.

Interest in the social role of space encouraged social science disciplines to engage in architectural studies. Anthropology of space tries to answer, how one or another place is constructed and why it acts in one way or another. Lecturers invited to this session of discussions approach architectural places from different perspectives, investigating social diversity, geography of crime, children’s mobility, sociability of architecture and imaginative architecture in photography.