Image credit: “Rubber Boots”, gato-gato-gato, 2013

M.Arch 1 Options Studio AY20/21 Semester 1
Spectres of Venice: Invisible Cities Revisited

The historical city-state of Venice has long fuelled the imagination of travellers and writers, perhaps none more so than journalist-novelist Italo Calvino, whose seminal Invisible Cities (1972) vicariously recounted scores of its imaginative simulacra through a fictional Marco Polo. Already battling environmental perils, the pandemic lockdown in Northern Italy this year led many to further ponder the long-term survival of this beleaguered city. The studio will grasp the contemporaneous challenges of island cities through a reading of Venice, An Odyssey: Hope and Anger in the Iconic City (2020), and a discussion with its author, Neal E. Robbins.

Taking inspiration from The Hard State, Soft City of Singapore (ed. Chung and Douglass, 2020) and lessons from Venice, the studio will work towards translating the intangible qualities of urban experience and cultural life into the virtual wonderworld. Underpinning the studio’s exploration is the role of space in narrative construction, and digital technology to the experience of space and place. Space is vitally context, referent and text to understanding human spatial experience.

Students are recommended to have a PC laptop, specifications NVIDIA P4000-5000 or equivalent to support the use of HTC Cosmos.

The tentative studio schedule and reading list can be found here and the Immersive Environment Workshop outline can be found here

This studio is supported by an NUS Teaching Enhancement Grant.