The City is not Architecture
Master of Architecture
Urban debates are shaped by the techniques of urban representation. Since the 1960's, words used to describe the contemporary city-from "non-place urban realm" to "terrain vague"-have de-emphasized the role of architecture, while the techniques of urban representation, largely inherited from the Renaissance, continue to represent the city as a large work of architecture. My thesis proposes that the visual conventions architects have used and continue to use for looking at and designing in the contemporary city have over-privileged the role of architecture, while neglecting other vital social factors like time or program. Maps are not innocent analytical documents, separate from design. They play a primary role in the design process, literally projecting the field in which design occurs: The design of the map can be more important than the design of the project.