SOUL OF CITY
Only a living creature owns a soul. And a body without a soul is only a corpse. ”SOUL OF CITY,” UIA 2017 Seoul’s main theme, therefore projects our strong commitment and determination to acknowledging the importance of having souls dissolved in architecture and cities we live in.
Jean-Luc Godard once said, “A chicken is an animal with an interior and an exterior. Remove the exterior, there’s the interior. Remove the interior, and you see the soul.” A city, like Godard’s chicken, can also be considered as a living organism with an exterior or a body and an interior or organs. An exterior of a city can be understood as its apparent impression as entities or its master plan, whereas an interior of a city is seen to be the elements of urban structures such as squares, streets or buildings. Perhaps, the very notion of the proposed theme may be a challenging and perplexing concept to describe; yet the nature of soul can be portrayed as a subject with a mental and immaterial feature, unlike the body with a physical and material element.
Likewise, a soul differs from a spirit. Together with the Zeitgeist’s notion or the spirit of the time, a spirit is envisaged as being representative, symbolic, collective, sacred, and transcendental. A soul, in turn, belongs to all and is personal in contrast, being embodied with memories, passions and emotions of one’s ordinary life. One’s soul may be plural, complex, diverse, evolving or even contradictory at the same time, between good and bad, happiness and unhappiness, love and hate, and so on.
A soul is an essential element not only in human lives, and so is in cities. To revitalize a city, we must improve the state of its soul and body. Before everything else, we must be aware of the particularity of a soul interchangeable by a specific place where one lives. Like a soul of a man, a soul of a city can be differentiated from one another, as a soul is fostered without intentions and a living thing until death. Since a soul cannot be artificially created or manipulated but only “found” in the realities of the terrain on site, we must acknowledge the soul, generated by city as it is.
Roles of architects, in this context, seeking “SOUL OF CITY,” are indeed significant, delivering meaningful and diversified urban environments to life through the convergence of culture, nature and future. These efforts will be translated into UIA 2017’s academic programs by reflecting three sub-themes of Culture, Future and Nature, and other subjects including Passion and Human values.
5 realms of urban architecture for reviving the Soul of City
3 Sub themes
Cities have been developed in accordance with the cultural aspects of own. A city’s profile is the result of the association of historic buildings, yet the given profile reflecting cultures and historic buildings is often heterogeneous. How then can we define and create the uniqueness of a city with various determinants in mind? How should we respond to the phenomena derived from cultural differences? What are the roles of architecture for this?
- Productive Preservation of Architectural Traditions
- Blending of Urban Landscapes and Historic Heritages
- Convergence of Diverse Cultures
Mankind strives to further advancing urbanization for survival. Cities, as the cradle of human civilization, have introduced technologies so as to embrace the increase of population. While city governance deliberates urban efficiency and social equilibrium, mankind are threatened by emerging environmental hazards and deviated humane values, often caused by losing control over population density, equilibrium-breaking social powers, and unbalanced housing problem. Architecture can bring in imaginations, emotional charms, and technological benefits to city lives.
- Technology for Happiness
- Housing for Next Generation
- Instant Life and Open-ended City
What we are expecting from UIA 2017 Seoul are:1] recognition of professional roles of urban regeneration in variety of aspects