ANNOUNCEMENTS

Learning with the world


Many European cities have already received the “world heritage” label from Unesco or are in the process of obtaining it. Even if economic factors are indeed present in such an undertaking, the status of “World Heritage Site” means for society as a whole and especially for architects, a particularly rich field of study, for research and design alike. It also represents for architecture students an endless field for developing professional skills and expertise. It is indeed very likely that the attentive study of the past and particularly its preservation, will remain one of the key stances of contemporary modernity for a long time.

While working with the Edinburgh School of Architecture on the creation of a Unesco heritage site, the Naoh association (New Architectures of Heritage) met with professors and scholars from the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture in Bordeaux who were working on the same topic. There, the idea of forming a network of European Schools paired with the Unesco sites, was put forth. Several exchanges have taken place since 2012 between the Architecture schools of Edinburgh, Bordeaux and soon Prague as well; as well as with the authorities in charge of these sites (Edinburgh World Heritage Trust and the Centre d'interprétation de l'architecture et du patrimoine in Bordeaux).

Grounded in a critical analysis of the criteria of authenticity and integrity that Unesco requires for listing and managing world heritage sites, these exchanges have several goals. They interpret these concepts in light of the protection procedures that vary depending on each country's culture of preservation, and study different types of intervention (past and future) on each site as well as their impact on the city. The Unesco urban sites are expected to showcase the best of conservation practises. They should also be laboratories for innovative contemporary interventions. Topics of study include the idea of “living heritage”: how may we sustain the life of architectural heritage and transform it, while also preserving it? On the scale of a city, must we conserve the architectural objects themselves, or the means by which they were created? At what point do we begin to harm a site's authenticity or integrity?

The comparative study of how different local cultures understand heritage opens the way to reflect on attitudes toward the acceptability of constraints that protective measures imply, and more importantly to identify the challenges facing society in a rapidly changing world. Is cultural heritage perceived as a refuge for rigid identities in the face of a menacing future? Or is it rather a pedestal from which to forge ahead into times to come?

This network will allow for student exchanges for research, for seminars, or for design semesters or workshops, partnered with professionals and cultural heritage institutions in each country. For teachers, this partnership could lead to pedagogical or even research projects. The network dynamics will also allow each host city to heighten awareness about cultural heritage amongst its partners.

The organisers are conducting a survey of pedagogical activities that European architecture schools undertake in cooperation with emerging countries and with countries in the Global South. If you are involved in such an activity, we invite you to fill in the questionnaire at the following site:

Learning with the world
 

Network of Architecture schools and World Heritage Sites


Many European cities have already received the “world heritage” label from Unesco or are in the process of obtaining it. Even if economic factors are indeed present in such an undertaking, the status of “World Heritage Site” means for society as a whole and especially for architects, a particularly rich field of study, for research and project alike. It also represents for architecture students an endless field for developing professional skills and expertise. It is indeed very likely that the attentive study of the past and particularly its preservation, will remain one of the key stances of contemporary modernity for a long time

While working with the Edinburgh school of Architecture on the creation of a Unesco heritage site, the Naoh association (New Architectures of Heritage) met with teachers-researchers of the Architecture and Landscape Architecture School of Bordeaux who were working on the same topic. There, the idea of forming a network of European Schools paired with the Unesco sites, was put forth. Several exchanges have taken place since 2012 between the Architectural schools of Edinburgh, Bordeaux and soon with Prague as well; as well as with the authorities in charge of these sites (Edinburgh World Heritage Trust and the Centre d'interprétation de l'architecture et du patrimoine in Bordeaux).

Based on the critical analysis of the criteria of authenticity and integration that Unesco requires when applying for and managing sites listed as world heritage, these exchanges have several goals. They aim to interpret these notions through the protection procedures that vary depending on each country's culture of preservation, and on the exploration of different types of contemporary intervention (past and future) on each site, as well as their impact on the city. The Unesco urban planning sites must showcase the best of conservation practises. They must also become laboratories for innovative contemporary interventions. Topics of study include the idea of “living heritage”; How can we continue to “let live and transform” a architectural heritage that we must also protect? On the scale of a city, must we protect architectural objects or the means by which they were historically created? When do we start to harm a site's authenticity or integration?

From these topics, the comparative study of the different approaches regarding world heritage sites depending on local customs should lead to reflexion regarding the acceptation of the constraints that flow from the applied protections, must mainly identify the social issues regarding global change. Is cultural heritage perceived as an identitary refuge when faced with a dreaded future or is it a pedestal on which to project society further into the future?

This network will allow for student exchanges for research, seminars, long projects or workshops, partnered with the professionals and the cultural heritage institutions of each country. For teachers, this partnership could lead to pedagogical or even research projects. The dynamic brought about by working as part of a network also favors equally their cultural broadcasting and the appreciation of their architectural heritage to their hosting cities partners. If your school is involved or interested in educational or research programs on UNESCO heritage sites, please indicate it to us using the following link : Unesco heritage sites.

Organisers
Chantal Callais, ensap Bordeaux (FR)
Thierry Jeanmonod, ensap Bordeaux (FR)
Gauthier Bolle, ensap Bordeaux (EN/FR)
James White, "naoh"- "new architectures of heritage" (EN/FR)

 

Jubilee : 40 years !


1977-2017 this year the EAAE is celebrating its 40 years since its creation. 40 years of initiatives in service of the teaching and research of architecture in Europe, 40 years in the service of European Architecture schools and universities, 40 years of cultural exchanges and shared experiences to better understand and promote the contextual and cultural diversity in Europe.

In order to mark the occasion, the EAAE is inviting you to a special party that will take place in the Bordeaux School of Architecture's park. The school was built 40 years ago by the Architect Claude Ferret as an expression of the 70s Modern movement.

In the presence of former presidents of the association, this event will celebrate the association's milestones that led it to be the number one meeting place for European Architecture schools and universities today.

It will also be a chance to get together in a festive atmosphere and relax, play lawn bowling under the night lights, taste Bordeaux's wines, take advantage of the local cuisine, talk, laugh and dance ‘till you're weary, a true countryside party « à la française »! We are looking forward to seeing you there!