Paths and tools of the production of space: incomplete cartographies of research, design and actions

Link: TISS 280.484

UE Übung / Semester hours: 2.0 / ECTS 4.0

**This course will be offered by City of Vienna Visiting Professor 2017 Prof. Ed Wall (University of Greenwich), MSc Elina Kränzle and DI Matina Kapsali MSc (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki)**

i. Aim of the course

During this exercise course students will explore the above themes through site-specific methodological approaches of researching and reimagining public spaces in Vienna. As part of the City of Vienna’s urban development strategy target areas of future development have been defined. To contribute to the discourse on these sites, students will be encouraged to employ dialogical cartographic approaches to produce open-ended, incremental map-based representations that blur the distinctions between research and proposals and between professional experience and site-specific knowledge. Maps will be produced through workshops and used as collaborative tools for navigating and creatively engaging with local people and sites of future redevelopment. This open-ended approach to research and design will result in divergent projects across different student teams, producing maps and interventions that directly relate to the people, sites and urban conditions with which students engage to add other propositions about the future development of the target areas to the existing master plan and top-down strategies. The course will build upon the content and approaches discussed in both lecture and seminar.

ii. Contents of the course

To research and reimagine public spaces in Vienna we will apply the method of ‚Incomplete Cartographies‘ as it has been developed by Ed Wall since 2013 in recognition that landscapes tend to resist definition. The ephemeral and dynamic conditions of landscapes, as they change through time, counter attempts to representationally and spatially control them. The open-ended method of creating incomplete cartographies has been developed with the aim of understanding and designing with multiple, undetermined and site-specific narratives contrasting traditional top-down architectural techniques where designs and representations attempt to fix time and complete space. Incomplete cartographies explore the subjective readings, incomplete understandings, partial representations and what Massey terms ’stories-so-far‘ (2005:131) of our relations with the land. The approach entwines research-based mappings by designers with less accessible accounts, gathered from people who live in or have knowledge of an area. Opening up mapping to non-professionals and their everyday narratives and knowledge of places and landscapes we open up questions of control, authorship and ownership of urban research and design.

The development of ‚Incomplete Cartographies‘ consists of three stages:

I. The objective of the first stage is to gather information about one of the target areas of future development, employing appropriate methods (such as interviews, observation, spatial analysis, ecological records or photographic surveys), and then analytically mapping the findings to create a single drawing that reveals specific site conditions. After assembling a range of information the students will define and represent particular themes based on their site investigations.

II. During the second stage, second author(s) are interviewed and invited to add to the map from the first stage, either using transparent overlays or marking the drawing directly. As for the interview students should select interviewees and second authors based on their particular knowledge or experience of the area.

III. During the third stage the maps are returned to the students who edit the maps, to synthesise the information (drawn and from the interview) into what became collectively authored drawings.

The main aim of this mapping approach is to engage with difficult to access knowledge of areas that are planned for redevelopment. Students direct mapping conversations that produce narratives, which reflect on past histories and incorporate future aspirations, that can inform the redevelopment process.

The course is structured into three intensive teaching blocks

ITB I – March 6-10, 2017

Bring your own map! Kick-off meeting with discussion of students mapping and spatial research experience and works

Introductory lecture Ed Wall

Introductory lecture Elina Kränzle

Site-Visit and gathering information about the area

Interim Consultations in April, creation of base map in teams of 2 until ITBII

ITB II – May 8-12, 2017

Presentation of Base-maps and plenary discussion

Development of themes for the co-authorship of the map

Implementation of interviews and synthesisation of collectively authored drawings

Individual and group consultations

Interim Consultations in June, further co-authorship and synthesisation of the map until ITBIII

ITB III – June 19-23, 2017

Presentation of synthesised maps

Feedback and final revision and redesign of the map

Public poster exhibition

iii. Assessment of students’ performance


iv. Further information

The Exercise (UE) „Paths and tools of the production of space: incomplete cartographies of research, design and actions“ is part of the module 11 „Urban culture and public space“ (consisting of three courses, VO 280.482, SE 280.483 and UE 280.484) which is offered during three five days intensive teaching blocks (ITB) by the Interdisiciplinary Centre for Urban Culture and Public Space (SKuOR). Module 11 compiles a set of integrated courses dealing with „Urban culture and public space“ at the interface of the fields of urban studies and urban design/urban planning. In 2017, the main focus will be on „Urban culture, public space and the present: Urban equity and the global agenda“.

The courses mainly address Master students (as well as late Bachelor or early PhD); especially those from spatial planning and architecture are invited to take part. Yet we explicitly welcome students coming from other Viennese universities in related disciplines, such as urban studies, urban design, geography, sociology, landscape architecture, cultural studies, … as well as ‚Mitbeleger‘.  The course language is English. We support students¿ active participation in debates and interactive teaching formats, and encourage you to bring in and develop your own ideas and critical perspectives. We seek to create an international level of debate and exchange and welcome students from all countries and cultures. Just contact us (info@skuor.tuwien.ac.at).

Students interested in this course have to take part in the lecture (TISS 280.482) as well as in the seminar (TISS 280.483).

To take part in all three courses of the module 11 please register for module 11 until 1st of March 2017 (08.30 pm) via TISS registration for the course VO 280.482. Further course registration will be carried out directly at the kick-off meeting on 1st of March 2017, 09:00 in Augasse 2-6, 2nd floor, WD02B21

Students are required to bring a strong interest in participatory research and design and visualisation and mapping, including advanced skills in CAD and Design applications (Adobe Illustrator).

Dates of the Module 11

The main body of teaching will be delivered during three intensive teaching blocks (ITB):

ITB 1.  6 – 10 March 2017

ITB 2.  8 – 12 May 2017

ITB 3.  19 – 23 Jun 2017