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The Hellenic American Union and the Hellenic American College (HAEC), in cooperation with the University of Western Australia (UWA) Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts, present the exhibition “Urbanism of Negotiation: Athens of the Crisis (Studio 2012-13) – Future  Athens (Studio 2013-14).

 

The official opening is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, January 14, 2015, at 20:30, at the galleries of the Hellenic American Union (Massalias 22, Kolonaki). The exhibition will be open to the public until January 30, 2015.

 

Curated by architect Kalliope Kontozoglou, Adjunct Professor of Architecture at the University of West Australia, the exhibition features architectural projects prepared by the students who participated in the study abroad program Athens Studio 2013 and 2014, jointly organized and taught by Kalliope Kontozoglou and Professor Nigel Westbrook.

 

The workshops followed a six week program, combining lectures, field-trips, excursions, and studio sessions held in 2013 at the Finnish Archaeological Institute hostel in Gyzi, and in 2014 at the Australian Archaeological Institute hostel in Makriyianni. The first workshop sought to reimagine the run-down market district of Gerani in inner-city Athens, as “a city within the city”, an area that has suffered disproportionately from the social and economic consequences of the World Economic Crisis, and its impact on Greece. Gerani had become a modern ruin. In response, it was proposed to create narratives for a future Gerani. The students were to imagine it as a peculiar Free Zone and write their own Bill of Rights for its citizens. The second workshop, “Future Athens (2013-2033),” a Utopia for the year 2033,  sought to envision the possible transformations of the city, as it has adapted to economic  changes and social and environmental circumstances, where redundant or decaying functions and areas are given new life. It was an exercise in hope.
Its primary goals were to investigate at a modest level the most trivial- the physical urban landscape, built and human, taken as an effective entry into the broader complexity of the city; to seek to recover a different awareness of the city by walking and recording important traces of urban artefacts, time periods of buildings and their topography, and to uncover spatial overlays in order to reach an understanding of the collective memory and therefore identity of the place.

 

Photos of the opening night. Amongst those who attended were: Elias Zenghelis, Eleni Gigantes, Dimitri and Suzanna Antonakakis, Sarah Goodall (the Deputy Head of Mission, Australian Embassy) and Leonidas-Foivos Koskos (President of Hellenic American University).