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Michigan / Mellon Symposium 2

Michigan / Mellon Symposium 2

The Egalitarian Metropolis: Common(s) Sense City

The Michigan/Mellon Project on Egalitarianism and the Metropolis is a 4.5-year academic and research initiative focused on architecture, urbanism and humanities research in Detroit, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro. It is made possible by a $1.3 million grant from the A. W. Mellon Foundation. The project allows design theory and practice to inform and be informed by questions of social justice, social movements and transformative creative arts movements - both past and present.

Common(s) Sense City brings together designers, scholars, humanists and cultural workers to examine the conceptual and lived experience of the public commons and the multidimensional task of theory and design to articulate ideological forces at work in our individual and collective coherence of the city. What is the status of the public commons, notions of the common good, and public space in the metropolis? How do we collectively “sense” the city - through our interaction with data, film, space, and physical proximity to fellow humans? What are the governing protocols between the dominant and subordinated classes? Panels on rethinking modernist orthodoxies, privatizing the commons, capital and justice, and political space of media - with an interdisciplinary group of speakers - are designed to foreground discussions on the implications of egalitarianism and the commons from the perspectives of inhabitants in three different contexts: metropolitan Detroit, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro. We invite capacious thinking that links humanists and designers in the twin task of elaborating egalitarianisms role in the development of the contemporary city. The unfinished projects of modernity, capitalism, egalitarianism, and the civil rights and human rights movements provide a dizzying array of interpretations. The role of the symposium is to clarify the ideological commitments to each of these projects and to catalyze new thinking that is accessible to the polity at large.

Michigan / Mellon Symposium 2

Schedule

Friday, March 11, 2016
University of Michigan Architecture Art & Design Auditorium, 2000 Bonisteel Blvd., Ann Arbor

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

 

KEYNOTE LECTURE + CONVERSATION

Teddy Cruz
Professor in Public Culture and Urbanization, Visual Arts Department, UCSD
Partner, Estudio Teddy Cruz + Forman
Co-Director, UCSD Cross-Border Initiative

Fonna Forman
Associate Professor, Political Science, UCSD
Partner, Estudio Teddy Cruz + Forman
Director, Center on Global Justice / Co-Director, UCSD Cross-Border Initiative

 

Saturday, March 12, 2016
University of Michigan Palmer Commons, Ann Arbor

9:30 am - 10:00 am

 

LIGHT REFRESHMENTS AT PALMER COMMONS

10:00 am - 10:20 am

 

MICHIGAN / MELLON PROJECT

Milton S. F. Curry, Project Director
Associate Dean / Associate Professor, U-M Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning

Matthew Biro, Project Director
Chair, and Professor U-M Department of Art History

10:15 am - 11:45 pm

 

SESSION 1: RETHINKING MODERNIST ORTHODOXIES

What impacts does modernist urban design have in contemporary cities severely segregated by class, race, ethnicity, and immigrants? What impact do the ideologies and logics of modern architecture and urban design have on your theoretical and design work?

MODERATOR: Arturo Ortiz Struck, Architect, Mexico City
Laura Janka, Former Director of Chapultepec Park, Mexico City
Gabriel Duarte, Arquiteto and Professor CAU-PUC-Rio, Rio de Janeiro
Pedro Évora, Principal, RUA Arquitetos, Rio de Janeiro

11:50 pm - 1:20 pm

 

SESSION 2: PRIVATIZING THE COMMONS

What are the particular forms of privatization (property valuation excesses, naming rights and branded neighborhoods, adjacencies between publicly-owned and privately-owned space, etc.) that are instrumental impediments to a more egalitarian city? What are some innovative ways that we can overcome these impediments? How are you working to do this?

MODERATOR: Ronald A. Judy, Professor of English, University of Pittsburgh
Wallace Turbeville, Senior Fellow, DEMOS
David Alade, Managing Partner, Century Partners Detroit
Hector Zamora, Artist, Mexico / Brazil

1:20 pm - 2:15 pm

 

LUNCH AT PALMER COMMONS

2:15 pm - 3:45 pm

 

SESSION 3: CAPITAL AND JUSTICE

How does capital evade juridical oversight and transparency? How do aberrant forms of capital flows, corruption and distortions of political participation subvert the ethical regulation of urban development and the maintenance of public infrastructure? What is the role of the legal community and humanities scholars in activism around this issue? How could these efforts expand to include designers?

MODERATOR: Heather Thompson, Professor of History, University of Michigan
Amanda Alexander, Professor of Law, University of Michigan
Lester Spence, Associate Professor of Political Science, Johns Hopkins University

3:50 pm - 5:30 pm

 

SESSION 4: POLITICAL SPACE OF MEDIA

How is media operationally working to put forth speculation about what it means to be human in the city, in the metropolis of the future? How can new media, and the ways in which people access it, provide more nuanced propositions about space that architectural representation has failed to produce?

MODERATOR: Tania Aedo Arankowsky, Director, Laboratorio Arte Alameda Mexico City
Jaki Irvine, Artist, Dublin
Melanie Smith, Filmmaker, Mexico City
Luis M. Castañeda, Assistant Professor, of Art History, Syracuse University

5:30 pm

 

CLOSING REMARKS

Robert Fishman, Dean, U-M Taubman College

RECEPTION IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THE SYMPOSIUM
UMMA Apse

DINNER ON YOUR OWN

 

 

Plan Your Future
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Land Use and Environmental Planning
Physical Planning and Design
Transportation Planning
Global and Comparative Planning