Speculations and Questions on Dubaization

Image: Sex and the City 2, 2010

Image: Sex and the City 2, 2010

So, can we think of Dubai with a fresh perspective, perhaps through Baudrillard’s assertion that “it is the empty space that should increase the symbolism in architecture?” Can we perceive Dubai as an object in empty space, a something that is not possible without its binary nothingness? Can we attribute the semiotic etymology of Dubaization to the symbolic nothingness of its desert and sea landscapes? Continue reading

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Feature: What is public space?

Poster: Walid Zbib, 1987

Poster: Walid Zbib, 1987

Recently in ARQUITETURA E URBANISMO (aU) series Fórum (Forum), Bianca Antunes invited professionals and academics to discuss contemporary meanings of public space considering region, culture and society. Antunes interviewed Saskia Sassen, Luiz Guilherme Rivera de Castro, Fadi Shayya and Paula Santoro on this issue as in the article (in Portuguese) “Fórum: o que é espaço público? (What is public space?)”. Continue reading

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Feature: حرج العيد: ذاكرة بيروت المحبوسة بالخوف

Recently on Al-Akhbar, Zeinab Merhi’s article discussed meanings of public space in Beirut and the latest updates on re-opening Beirut’s Park “Horsh Al-Sanawbar.”

حرج العيد: ذاكرة بيروت المحبوسة بالخوف

الأخبار / مجتمع واقتصاد. العدد ٢٠٧٣ الثلاثاء ٦ اب ٢٠١٣. زينب مرعي

نتساءل هنا إن كان التواصل أو النقاش يحتاج إلى مساحة عامة كي يحصل أم أنّ عدم وجود المساحة العامة يعيقها؟ يجيب هنا شيّا بأنه إذا لم يحقق اللبنانيون هذا التواصل في شوارعهم المتلاصقة، والتي وجدوا طرقاً عديدة لتقسيم أنفسهم طوائف ومذاهب فيها، فإنّهم لن يحققوه في الحرج. ويضيف «يكفي أن ننظر إلى ميداني التحرير ورابعة العدوية في مصر حتى نعرف أنّ أفكار وحاجات الناس تقودها إلى أن تخلق ما تحتاج إليه. فهذان المكانان ليسا عامّين لكن الناس جعلتهما يكتسبان هذا المعنى عندما احتاجت إليهما». Continue reading

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Feature: City and Reconstruction: Beirut

IMAGE: Zerega, 2010

IMAGE: Zerega (Panoramio), 2010

Recently in ARQUITETURA E URBANISMO (aU) series Conversas urbanas (Urban Conversations), Bianca Antunes discussed the modern reconstruction of Beirut’s central area from the perspective of visionary politics. Her argument stressed the importance of visionary planners and planning/design seizing political opportunities – such in the case of Beirut’s reconstruction – to influence change rather merely being civic activists. Antunes interviewed Fadi Shayya on this issue as in the article below (in Portuguese) “Cidade e Reconstrução: Beirute (City and Reconstruction: Beirut)”. Continue reading

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Feature: Critics Wary of Plan to move Stadium

IMAGE: THE DAILY STAR, 2013

IMAGE: THE DAILY STAR, 2013

Recently in The Daily Star, Lysandra Ohrstrom covered the controversy surrounding Beirut Mayor’s announcement to demolish the city’s Municipal Stadium and build a community center instead. Ohrstrom interviewed Fadi Shayya on this issue as in the article below “Critics Wary of Plan to Move Stadium”. Continue reading

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