CUDRR+R’s Board Member, Esra Akcan has published a new book entitled Open Architecture: Migration, Citizenship and the Urban Renewal of Berlin-Kreuzberg by IBA-1984-87 (Birkhäuser, 2018).
Esra Akcan’s new book explores the implications of the concept of “open” as a common metaphor in the era of global connections, and as a foundational modern value albeit prone to contradictions. It defines open architecture as the translation of a new ethics of hospitality into design process. In particular, it exemplifies the inclinations towards open architecture (or the lack thereof) in the context of the discriminatory housing regulations of an urban renewal development in Berlin’s immigrant neighbourhood Kreuzberg. Giving voice not only to architects and policy makers, but also to residents through oral history and storytelling, the overarching theme of non-citizen rights to the city allows for a joint discussion of the history of the twentieth-century public housing, the participatory, postmodernist and post-structuralist architectural debates, and the contradictory relation between international immigration laws and housing.
Esra Akcan’s new book has received endorsements from a multitude of academics and researchers.
“Under the rubric of an Open Architecture, this book provides a substantial survey and critique of the IBA reconstruction of Berlin in the 1980’s. Akcan proceeds to incorporate into her history of Berlin’s International Building Exhibition a demonstration of the incompatibility between democracy and the professional prerogative of individual design.”
Kenneth Frampton, Professor, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University
“A breakthrough work that combines deep research, interviews with the inhabitants of new and renovated apartments, with an incisive architectural critique of spaces, historically, and in use. A brilliant combination. This is what architectural history should always aspire to ‐‐ a model for all future studies. ”
Anthony Vidler, Professor, The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture, The Cooper Union
Please join Esra Akcan’s new book launch on June 27 at 6.30 pm at AAP NYC.