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Carlo Ratti Associati: The Latest Architecture and News

Game Boarding Regional Development

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

The recent ‘Greater Bay Area’ (GBA) initiative has led to a renewed interest in the supra-urban and regional or territorial planning scale by the spatial planning professions, urbanists and strategic spatial planners globally. The emergence of ‘mega’ urban-scapes and their regional agglomeration into urbanised areas of over 70 million – at least an order of magnitude larger than has ever been planned before - has reframed many conventional challenges of the spatial planning agenda. With the mega region in formation, a new necessity emerges, that being the investigation of the dynamic, morphogenetic and ecosystemic properties specific to specific regional conditions. Simply, the integration of eleven significantly sized cities and their corresponding metropolitan hinterlands, three special economic or administrative regions, three currencies, and three (or more) different cultural groups into one urban regional entity is a massive undertaking. At present aside from the governance and policy intentions this has primarily resulted in an infrastructural planning approach, one that utilizes a systemic top-down approach that seeks to provide the connective tissues and reticules, as well as civic and economic systems that mobilise people, capital and goods in such a vast region. This approach is akin to the smart city models which seek to enfold all aspects of civic life within infrastructure systemic control paradigms. But in reality, given the scope and scale of this undertaking the modalities of planning in the GBA need to shift from an extensive planned realm in which every part coheres to a plan, to one of a differentiated field in which different intensities arise as an effect of their urban eco-system integration (or its lack of). This clearly needs new approaches, concepts and models of planning that can deal with these regional issues in dynamic, open-ended ways that can foster new modalities of planning. 

Street Art in the Digital Age: Photos, Documents, Urban Agency

How do street art practices resonate through the digital world, and how do we trace such resonance back to the street? More generally, what happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Andrea Baldini (Nanjing University) reflects on the role that the Internet, and social networks, in particular, have had in boosting the circulation of graffiti and street art and, in turn, their communicative and denouncing power.

For the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," (21 December 2019-8 March 2020) ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies might impact architecture and urban life. The contribution below is part of a series of scientific essays selected through the “Eyes of the City” call for papers, launched in preparation of the exhibitions: international scholars were asked to send their reflection in reaction to the statement by the curators Carlo Ratti Associati, Politecnico di Torino and SCUT, which you can read here.

The Urban (Un) Seen “Artificial Intelligence as Future Space” / Bettina Zerza for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

Technologies of the virtual realm present an opportunity to rethink the experience of space, society, and culture. They give us the possibility to engage with the city of the future, shaping the built environment of the 21st century. 

Carlo Ratti Associati Reveals New Vision Plan for Lugano’s Waterfront

Designed by CRA- Carlo Ratti Associati and MIC-Mobility in Chain, the proposed plan for the Swiss city Lugano creates a network of public spaces, that connects the town to the lake. The project puts in place a floating garden and a reconfigurable waterfront.

Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati + 10

How Does Architectural Design Change When the City Becomes Equipped with the “Most Recent Advances in Artificial Intelligence”? / Alessandro Armando, Giovanni Durbiano for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

The Convergence of People, Cities, Nature, and Technology: A Review of the Shenzhen Biennale

December 22nd, 2019 saw the public opening of the 8th Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB) in Shenzhen, China. As the world’s most visited architecture exhibition, the Biennale forms an influential moment for the dissemination of architectural knowledge, and the generation of dialogue and feedback loops between designers and citizens. Titled “Urban Interactions”, the Biennale's 2019 edition sets its sights on the multifaceted question of how technological advancements will impact the relationships cities share with people, technology, nature, and each other.

Pan-Dimensional City / Wang Jianguo. Image © Han Shuang / ArchDaily Manufacturing Human / Wang Zigeng. Image © Han Shuang / ArchDaily Individual Furniture / Sou Fujimoto. Image © Han Shuang / ArchDaily “Nomadic Wood (Looking)” – Philip F. Yuan. Image © UABB + 25

The World's Most Visited Architecture Biennale Opens in Shenzhen

The 8th Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (Shenzhen) has officially opened in Shenzhen, China. Hosted at both the Shenzhen Museum of Contemporary Art and Planning (MOCAUP) and the Futian Railway Station, the event is the most visited architecture biennale in the world, and holds the distinction of being the first major architectural event where all materials for the exhibitions were sourced in the host city of Shenzhen.

Jon Rafman-Legendary Reality. Image via Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (Shenzhen) Wang Zigeng-Manufacturing Human. Image via Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (Shenzhen) Wang Jianguo-Pan-dimensional City. Image via Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (Shenzhen) Liam YOUNG-Camouflage Choreography. Image via Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (Shenzhen) + 38

The New Technologies of Archivization / Albena Yaneva for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

Architectural practice naturally results in an extraordinary accumulation of visuals and archival media that demand sorting, cataloguing, and organizing at a certain moment in time in order to avoid their amorphous accumulation to invade the working order of a firm. Tagging, numbering and classifying the accumulated traces of architectural creativity and data, has become a way of organizing the log of creative options and scenarios developed in practice, a directory of successful examples and of failures, all arranged to be used as a self-referential working catalogue of options that may be mobilized at any moment in time. 

From the City as a Service to The City as a License / Martijn de Waal and Frank Suurenbroek for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," Archdaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

Cities, as Goethe had already pointed out, should be understood as continuously developing 'forms in motion' (see Batty 2018). In the past, technological developments and our hopeful, as well as our dystopian imaginations of them, have been one of the main sources of kinetic energy to kick-off the shapeshifting processes of urban transformations. Most of the time with unexpected side-effects, evolving center stage in retrospect.

XXX TIMES SQUARE WITH LOVE / Jürgen Mayer H. for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

The history of Times Square and 42nd street is a history of the human gaze. Broadway theaters and X-rated shows used to enjoy a neighborly relationship of “looking at” and “being looked at” in musical theaters, peep shows and x-rated cinemas. Voyeurism was the business that is lost since for an urban context which by now transformed into an almost aseptic shopping and entertainment district. 

The Shenzhen & Hong Kong 2019 Bi-City Biennale Reflects on Technology and Urban Life

Opening in December in Shenzhen, China, the Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism and Architecture (UABB), organized by the cities of Shenzhen and Hong Kong, will discuss the theme of “Urban Interactions”. First to use Facial Recognition and Artificial Intelligence, the public exhibition will test new grounds to reflect on the impact of digital technologies on the urban environment.

© Yung Ho Chang © Reparametrize Studio © The Center for Spatial Technologies © SEICHE + 35

Media Architecture: New Interactions in the City / Alice Britton for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

Media Architecture is a merging of new technologies and the built form in order to explore narrative and to imbue character, to engage people and create new dialogues through a layer of meaningful experience. 

It isn’t a new concept - telling a story about a building through its form, particularly the facade of a building, has been around throughout history;- just think of York Minster’s stained glass windows, St Mark’s Basilica in Venice, and the Meenakshi Temple in Tamil Nadu.  What is exciting now is the opportunities brought about by technology to create new narratives and new forms of human interaction. 

Urban Cinematics and the Revenge of Place / François Penz for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

Ever since the Lumière brothers trained their camera on La Place des Cordeliers in Lyon in 1895, cinema has shaped our collective urban imagination. For 125 years, film has relentlessly recorded the deaths and lives of not just great American cities but of all great – and not so great – cities the world over. Film-makers have observed, expressed, characterized, interpreted and portrayed hundreds of thousands of city streets. By charting the cities’ evolution across the 20th century to present days, films are the quintessential Eyes on and of the City.

Italy Reveals its CRA-Designed Pavilion for Expo 2020 Dubai

Italy has just unveiled its national pavilion, conceived by CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati, Italo Rota Building Office, matteogatto&associati and F&M Ingegneria. In collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the U.A.E, the project is a metaphor for the journey from Italy to Dubai.

Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati and Italo Rota Building Office, with matteogatto&associati and F&M Ingegneria Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati and Italo Rota Building Office, with matteogatto&associati and F&M Ingegneria Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati and Italo Rota Building Office, with matteogatto&associati and F&M Ingegneria Courtesy of CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati and Italo Rota Building Office, with matteogatto&associati and F&M Ingegneria + 8

Designing Freedom / Luigi Prestinenza Puglisi for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

When the city has eyes to see, it will become the stuff of nightmares. The panopticon prophecy will come to life. Democracy will die.

The pretexts through which a thousand mechanisms that spy on us have been introduced into cities are three:

  • security from thieves, criminals and terrorists;
  • energy savings and performance optimization;
  • the possibility of having structures that spontaneously understand our needs, without any requests on our part.

Amateur Visual Forensics and the View from Nowhere / Dietmar Offenhuber for the Shenzhen Biennale (UABB) 2019

What happens when the sensor-imbued city acquires the ability to see – almost as if it had eyes? Ahead of the 2019 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), titled "Urban Interactions," ArchDaily is working with the curators of the "Eyes of the City" section at the Biennial to stimulate a discussion on how new technologies – and Artificial Intelligence in particular – might impact architecture and urban life. Here you can read the “Eyes of the City” curatorial statement by Carlo Ratti, the Politecnico di Torino and SCUT.

If the 1991 Gulf War marked the beginning of electronic media warfare, the recent armed conflicts in the Middle East have highlighted an equally central role of social media. Platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have long been used to galvanize protest movements, organize assemblies, and spread information. During the decade from the Arab Spring movement to the Syrian civil war, the role of social media has grown from a utilitarian infrastructure to the principal medium of conflict. Today’s version of Jean Baudrillard’s “war porn” comes as battleground footage recorded by smartphones and drones mixed with propaganda messages and pop culture references to computer games and internet memes. As documented by the journalist Abdel Bari Atwan, mercenary groups plan military operations according to their expected media impact on followers, opponents, and foreign funders. Sometimes, fights are entirely staged to collect persuasive footage.

Carlo Ratti Discusses Architectural Innovation and the Shenzhen Biennale

Carlo Ratti can be considered one of the great architectural innovators of our time. The founder of Carlo Ratti Associati, and Director at the MIT Senseable City Lab, Ratti champions the power of new technologies to transform both how we live, and how we design. The act of “convergence” is central to Ratti’s architectural outlook, whether it be the convergence of bits and atoms, or natural and artificial, or human and technology. Moreover, he believes that this convergence can reframe the design process, and engage citizens in discussions on what kind of city they want to live in.

2015, CRA Cloud Cast. Image © Carlo Ratti Associati 2008, CRA Digital Water Pavilion . Image © Claudio Bonicco 2015, CRA Cloud Cast. Image © Pietro Leoni 2008, CRA Digital Water Pavilion . Image © Ramak Fazel + 12