Posted on August 24, 2019

City of Urban Inventions exhibition at the 2019 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism/Thematic Exhibition, Seoul, Korea, September 7 – November 10, 2019.

Cultivating an ability to detect potentials in the contemporary city is paramount in our world of extreme urbanization. The Visionary Cities Project, therefore, explores spatial, organizational, and material ingenuities born out of the forces and pressures of the city, answered by the architectural amateur, and used by everyone. Over multiple years, our team has collected examples from around the world that are important to the way the world is built, influential in its capacities to mobilize, mesmerizing in its strangeness, and yet outside the architectural radar. These urban inventions and tactics from across the globe are often outrageous, sometimes humorous, but always embedded in the here and now. Most importantly, these conditions are saturated with potential for a new kind of architectural urbanism. The drawing of a Collective City of Urban Inventions, therefore, utilizes these micro urbanisms to project an urbanism entirely composed of these individual and hybridized urban intelligences. This new kind of city is fragmented and yet collective in its shared qualities; global and yet composed of local ingenuities; limited and yet endless through its continuous infrastructure; timeless and yet committed to the present. It is a city where architecture has learned from the forces of urbanization.

The drawing is augmented with an app that enables you to see the original building blocks that created the City of Urban Inventions. Simply hold your phone camera over the drawing in order to discover more about the reference projects, their location, and the way these artifacts act upon the world. Get close to the drawing (5″-12″) and slowly pan across. The app will automatically detect the projects and augment the map with photographs and descriptions. You can zoom into the photograph to inspect it more closely and continue your search for urban inventions. (This AR is an archive that will continue to grow.)

Special thanks for the mobile development by Daria Tsoupikova, Sai Priya Jyothula, and Arthur Nishimoto at the Elecronic Visualiation Laboratory at UIC.

Team Members: Matthew Busscher, Daisey Martinez, Pedro Medrano, Paul Mosley, Janina Sanchez, Anton Tonchev