Cultural Identity and the City - Auckland, NZ and Wismar
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Citation:Schnoor, C. (2013). Cultural Identity and the City - Auckland, NZ and Wismar. In In S. Lampe and J. Müller (eds.) Dialogue "Baukultur" - Innovations in Teaching: Successfully Reinforcing the International Dimension. Wismar: Wismar University of Applied Sciences and DAAD(Eds.), (pp. 379-401).
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/2926
What forms the cultural identity of a city? As architectural historian and theorist, I will apply this question to the “Baukultur”, this German term, on the one hand heavily loaded and on the other hand virtually impossible to translate. “Baukultur” stands for a culture of architecture and the built environment in its entirety. Thus I will ask: how can the identity of a city be defined via its built culture? This notion of Baukultur is less narrow in its definition than one would most likely expect to see in Wismar, a town so heavily focussed on its status as UNESCO World Heritage. Is not the city as a whole in its built development a testimony to past and present architectural culture? If this is so, a discussion of built culture needs to be geared to what has marked and continues to mark the development of a city, rather than asking for the ‘beautiful’ constituents of the city. As Aldo Rossi did in his 1966 Architecture of the City, we will follow the notion of typology as defining element and of the ‘tessuto’, the fabric as a quasi-sculptural basic element of the city. Please allow me to answer the question regarding built culture via a brief investigation of Auckland, hoping that this may stimulate reflections on this very question in Wismar.