Seminar Week: October 21–25, 2013

François Schuiten, ‘Les Cités Obscures’

But it is amazing how the Big City, despite all its ugly buildings, despite all its noise and anything it can be blamed for, is for the one who is willing to see a miracle of beauty and poetry. It is a fairy tale - colourful, coloured and diverse like no other a poet has ever told. It is a home, a mother that is wastefully pouring luck over her children over and over again. This may sound paradox and exaggerated, but whoever is not blinded by prejudice, whoever understands to devote, whoever allows to engage intensively with the city will soon learn about the incredible beauty that are embraced by its streets, its countless wonders, its indefinite richness - open to everyone’s eyes but so little seen.
— The Beauty of the Metropolis, August Endell, 1908

The Metropolis is not simply about architecture, it is an all encompassing cultural condition. It is old and new, ugly and beautiful, empty as well as full. It is built with Expressionist, Art Deco, and other forms of modern architecture, and has inspired painting, literature and film. The seminar week will study the condition of the Metropolis in Hamburg and Brussels. We will look at the history of these cities, but always in the context of their present. We will meet with contemporary writers, artists and architects in an attempt to understand if the Metropolis still exists and whether it is relevant to contemporary life.

Category C, 15 students

Professor Adam Caruso 
Assistants: Martina Bischof, Maria Conen, Murat Ekinci, Oliver Lütjens, Philipp Oehy, Anna Page