10th International Docomomo Conference opens next week

The official opening of the conference will take place on Tuesday, September 16th, from 19:00-22:00 at the Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology. A joint welcome will be delivered by Wytze Patijn (Dean of the Faculty of Architecture), Maristella Casciato (Chair of Docomomo International), Bernard Toullier (Ministre de la Culture et de la Communication, Paris, France), and Janneke Bierman (Chair of Docomomo Netherlands). Herman Hertzberger will deliver his opening lecture entitled “Modernism or Modernity” in which he will reflect on the spirit of modernity, that according to him “is not limited by a specific period which produced a number of mostly white and flat buildings. It represents an ongoing notion that deals with cultural change.”

After the opening lecture the exhibition Revival of the Bauhaus Tel Aviv will be introduced by Izak Salomons and opened by Mrs. Hamutal Rogel-Fuchs, Cultural Attach of the Embassy of Israel, and Mrs. Anne Koning, Deputy Mayor of Delft.

During the conference, the Bauhaus in Tel Aviv exhibition will be shown at the Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology. The show, curated by Shmual Yavin, gives an interesting overview of the remarkable collection of Bauhaus buildings in Tel Aviv. The exhibition shows projects which are fully restored in their original state, projects where alterations were allowed and even new built projects, built in the spirit of the International Style. The exhibition was first shown in October 2003 in the Bauhaus Centre in Tel Aviv.

There will be two public lectures that are part of the second international Docomomo student workshop “Strategies for the Coolsingel Strip.” On Sunday, September 14 from 11:00-13:00, Professor Paul Meurs (Delft University of Technology, MIT Research Center) and Arjen Knoester (Rotterdam City Council, dS+V Department for Urban Planning, Housing and Traffic) will each present a vision on the future of the Coolsingel strip at the Netherlands Architecture Institute (NAi).

Paul Meurs will talk about the cultural-historical analyses of the historical layeredness of the Coolsingel, the developments over the course of time, and the significance of all this for future interventions.

Arjen Knoester will talk about the Coolsingel in relation to other European shopping boulevards and to municipal policy in regard to building, traffic, use, and public space. In addition, he will examine what the contributions are of the projects by OMA, EEA, and Claus and Kaan to the revaluation of the living, employment, leisure and retail climate in that part of Rotterdam. Hielkje Zijlstra (Docomomo Netherlands) will moderate the discussion.

On Monday, September 15 from 20:00-21:00, Arno Ruigrok (Multi Vastgoed BV) will give a lecture at the Van Nelle Factory in Rotterdam on the aspects of property development in the city centre of Rotterdam and the way the Coolsingel strip functions on different levels within this framework.

Wessel de Jonge (Wessel de Jonge architecten bna bv) will speak on Wednesday, September 17 from 19:30-22:00. Wessel de Jonge designed the plan for the transformation of the Van Nelle Factory while working for Leodejonge Architects. Wessel de Jonge’s own office got the commission for the supervision of the realization of the plans. He will deliver a lecture entitled “Van Nelle Reloaded 1928-2008” about the dilemmas and challenges of the transformation of the factory. After the lecture, Carlo Olm (Head Master of the Faculty of Architecture, University of Turin, Italy), Lodovico Folin-Calabi (World Heritage Centre, UNESCO), and John Allan (Director of Avanti Architects, United Kingdom) will reflect upon Wessel de Jonge’s speech and discuss the redevelopment of industrial heritage in a broader social and economic context.