Urban atmospheres – past and future Professor Gillian Rose and Associate Professor Mikkel Bille School Geography and the Environment, Oxford
At this all-day seminar we would like to discuss the importance of the past and future to the sense of atmospheres in the city – in the design of cityscapes and in the experience of city dwellers.
In cities across the world, pasts and futures are woven into the urban fabric and are deeply imbricated in the ways we experience their atmospheres. This seminar invites participants to discuss the role of the past and future in shaping urban atmospheres.
The uneven surface of cobblestones in the street, the cracks in brick walls, the preserved or decaying remains of industry or the steel surface of an old bridge all influence how people experience ever-changing cities. It is places that nevertheless always contain some material traces of the past while undergoing continuous processes of design and construction that lead toward the future.
Meanwhile, a plethora of building materials, ageing and brand-new infrastructure, deeply rooted and recently planted vegetation are neither insignificant nor passive. Rather, they shape people’s experiences and behavior as they dwell in and move through the city. Urban monuments and memorials serve to tell particular stories about the past while adding something to the atmosphere of the places they are located in. At the same time, new structures and building sites add a sense of newness to cities and reconfigure familiar