This book contains the documents of the winning project of the International Ideas Competition for the urban renewal of the Mondello area, an important seaside resort on the northern coast of Palermo. Yet, as is often the case for ideas competitions, the projects drawn up on these occasions are not only an answer to the requests of the announcement, but turn into chances for reviewing the area, describing its transformations and, sometimes, even “rewriting” those requests which the announcement itself, for various reasons does not underline. Competitions, in other words, become a chance for exploring both issues and resources, and also for pointing out solutions. They can be considered as a workshop on the city hosting them, by bringing back to architecture an explorative potential and a knowledge content which often crosses architecture itself.The winning project started – since its first drafting - on this very hypothesis and will to investigate larger urban issues, by testing the possibilities offered by an ideas competition. The proposed scenarios move along between the description of the conditions and the possible identities of Mondello, and the verification of some working assumptions and urban programmes, achieved through the instruments and languages specific to the architectural project.Texts and projects are accompanied by Olivio Barbieri’s views, an Italian photographer among the most refined and sensitive to locations, landscapes and their transformations. Photographs, in the same way as architecture, “operate” insofar as they bring something to light. The relationship between photographers and architects becomes actually fertile when they eventually see what reality contains but does not describe yet. Therefore, they can act in an intermediate step of the experience of transformations, thus revealing the unexpected potential of places.Designs, texts, and pictures revise the iconography of Mondello by offering to its inhabitants and passersby an unusual gaze on a reality which only an artist as Barbieri could reveal. At the same time, they use its possible future modifications as a chance to interpret the themes of contemporary urban design.The voice of Alberto Ferlenga, author of the preface, joins the author’s, and sets the issues brought up by the book inside the current scientific debate on architecture, landscape, and contemporary cities – through the peculiar point of view of a member of the competition jury.An afterword by the author himself – broaching some questions regarding Landscape Urbanism, conceived as an updated paradigm on contemporary urban design – completes the book and outlines working themes and directions relevant to research and projects outside and inside Italian Architecture faculties.
|Number of pages||134|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|