The Eternal Present of the Mythical Event: Re-establishing Place Identity with Speculative Installations that Reawaken Heritage Stories
journal contributionposted on 11.09.2021, 03:17 by Daniel BrownDaniel Brown
This paper proposes that speculative architectural installations strategically ‘curated’ into neglected architectural contexts can help to engender an ‘immediate and a timeless realm,’ an encapsulation of a cultural story that the new interventions help to embody. The research method investigates historical and cultural narratives that were once associated with selected architectural and urban sites that have lost their place identity over time. Design-led research experiments examine how place identity can be rejuvenated by strategically curating objects, digital animation and sound into these architectural contexts in ways that bring their essential stories to life again, allowing cultural and heritage memories to be collectively experienced and shared. The research concludes that speculative architectural installations provide an opportunity to reach a much wider public audience than traditional academic scholarly approaches alone. Through community-based and collaborative creative practice, such architectural research can critically explore – and help to mediate and mitigate – seemingly intractable contemporary architectural problems such as the loss of cultural, heritage and place identity in our evolving urban environments. The research that looked at a derelict urban site in Rome played a significant role in convincing the Rome City Council that strategic application of cultural, mythological and historical experiences is a viable cost-effective way to culturally revitalise neglected and derelict public spaces.