Stone on paper. Architects manifesting on their cities

Adolfo Sotoca


The role of architect in city-making has been the theme of unsolved debates in urbanism. Committed as performers and recipients of a holistic knowledge, architects-urbanists keep acting, still today, in-between idealism and pragmatism. The city, being frequently defined as a text, becomes the molten object where projects brought to materiality are able to build an intangible narrative. The paper presents the ongoing research 6by6, a compared analysis of cities where the apparent contradiction between idealism and practice is solved. Acknowledged American and European cities are analysed as a mean to illustrate the connections between the most extreme city-narrative – architectural manifestos ‒ with the most tangible material commitment – actual and implemented urban projects. This article announces them and reports on the manifestoes they are the cores of.

Słowa kluczowe: Architectural Manifestoes, European city, American city

Axelrod J., Inventing Autopia. Dreams and visions of the modern metrópolis in jazz age Los Angeles, University of California Press, 2009.

Bacon E., Design of cities (1967), Revised Edition, Penguin Books, 1976.

Carnap R., Der Raum (1929) [in:] Yates S., Poetics of space, Ed. Gustavo Gili, 2002.

De Certeau M., The Practice of Everyday Life, trans. Steven Rendall, UC Press, 1984.

Lynch K., Reconsidering the Image of the City (1985) [in:] Banerjee T. & Southworth M., City Sense and City Design. Writings and projects of Kevin Lynch, MIT Press, 2002.

Banham R., Los Angeles. The Architecture of four ecologies (1971), University of California Press, 2000.

Hertweck F. & Marot S., The City in the City. A manifesto (1977) by Oswald Mathias Ungers and Rem Koolhaas, Lars Müller Publishers, 2013.

Koolhaas R., Delirious New York. A retroactive manifesto for Manhattan (1978), Monacelli Press, 1994.

Quaroni L., Una ciudad eterna. Cuatro lecciones de veintisiete siglos. An eternal city. Four lessons of twenty-seven centuries (1959), Fundación Caja de Arquitectos, 2008.

De Solà-Morales, Against the Universal Metropolis (2000) and Cut-cities (first edited in Il racconti de l’abittare. Appunti su identità e differenze, Milan, 1994), [in:] de Solà-Morales, A Matter of things, NAI Publishers, Rotterdam 2008.