CITY UNDER (DE)CONSTRUCTION
[...] Kyiv has flowed in and out of the European consciousness throughout its long and tumultuous history. Founded in the 5th century, it has served as capital of the first Slavic empire, cultural hub of Eastern Europe, forgotten village within a foreign empire, Soviet city and its current status as the capital of an independent Ukraine. During this time, the city has contracted and expanded repeatedly, as it was completely destroyed on several occasions. The last 60 years have greatly influenced the way the city looks today, accounting for over 50% of contemporary Kyiv. It was in these last few decades that the center received its wide boulevards and plazas in order to accommodate Soviet party parades, while huge residential complexes pushed the city limits well beyond and across the Dniepro River, massive industrial sites were carved in the city fabric and one of the world’s most famous metro lines was build in order to make this new giant organism functional. Bits and pieces of the old city, however, have remained trapped amidst the concrete slabs. […] Today, torn between history and destiny, communism and capitalism, East and West, rich and poor, village and metropolis, the city comprises all in a heterogenic mix, a patchwork of colors, textures and ideas. Finding its way through a process of trial and error, it builds and destroys almost randomly, constantly redefining its trajectory. […] The new developments are competing for space with the increasing sprawl of informal structures lining the streets and boulevards forming an almost continuous bazaar stretched for kilometers through the city. Contrasts of scale, shape and aspect occur with such frequency that they become the norm rather than the accident. The surprise is that nothing is surprising anymore in this rich collage.
MSc studio BC, semester 12, 2008-10
Participants: Sara Bilge, Maria Ionescu, Ivo de Jeu, Seongheon Oh, Christian Meezen, Nadine de Ripainsel, Carolien Schippers, Dennis Wasch.
Mentors: Raviv Ganchrow, Oscar Rommens, Marc Schoonderbeek, Elise van Dooren, Jan Engels, Suzanne Groenewold.