Submission deadline:

December 8, 2023

SITA Landscape as Horizon

In the last chapter of L’architecture au futur depuis 1889, Jean-Louis Cohen listed several “vanishing points” that, although barely visible in the distance, would allow architecture to escape the unrelenting aspiration for originality, newness, monumentality, ornament, in the end only engendering desolate, generic, ultimately boring spaces, devoid of life. The topics mentioned by Cohen indicate instances that allow the architectural profession to aspire to a type of social, political, or indeed cultural relevance in the contemporary world. Their singularity resides in that they are often examples led by practice, yet to be absorbed in the more theoretical strata of architecture.
Among the different such vanishing points the one entitled Landscape as horizon seems to be one of the most challenging, all the while holding the promise to branch out into many critical contemporary topics.
Cohen writes:
Whether designed in close contact with architects or autonomously, the recent landscape projects involve a more modest definition of architectural intervention… Through their detailed attention to sites — both their historical backgrounds and ecological systems — landscape designers are suggesting modes of urban development and renewal that avoid the narcissism of overpowering edifices, and they are establishing rules ensuring that buildings are properly integrated into their surroundings. They are making fundamental contribution by striking a delicate balance between development and preservation and by reformulating local specificities related not just to the built heritage but also to the very structure of natural and artificial landscapes.
For the next issue of sITA, the editors invite contributions that look into general or detailed topics concerning:
  • landscape as subversion, alternative or complement to mainstream urbanism;
  • questioning the traditional limits between the rural and the urban, between countryside and the city, between the natural and the manmade;
  • landscape as unlimited territory for new approaches, habits, social responsibilities, and openings to new cultural horizons;
  • historical and/or emergent approaches in theory and practice related to landscape;
  • new topics and paradigms in practice: agro-culture, post-Covid behaviors, urban acupuncture …
  • planning non-intervention to preserve landscape with its non-artificial, self-regulating and constantly changing components, incompatible with the fundamentally human endeavor of making things last longer.
The editors of sITA are hopeful that Jean-Louis Cohen’s generosity, humanity, and essential optimism will be suitably honoured by our discreet attempt to further some of the questions he raised.
Deadline for abstracts: 8 December 2023
More information can be found on the journal website.

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