6th – 10th October 2010
Under Construction -
The Material and Symbolic Meaning of Architecture and Infrastructure
in the Gulf Region
International Workshop at the Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient, Berlin
NEW: Videodocumantation of the Keynotelecture
Lecture by Michael Schindhelm (former Consult of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, Government of Dubai, VAE)
Lecture by Prof. Michael Schwarz (Faculty of Engineering, Ajman University of Science and Technology, VAE)
Subsequent Discussion with the Lecturers and PD Dr. Katrin Bromber (ZMO)
Conveners: Katrin Bromber, Birgit Krawietz, Steffen Wippel
Maps, information brochures and newspaper articles regarding cities, infrastructure and recreational spaces on the Arab side of the Gulf often present virtual realities that have not yet been built. While the Emirate Dubai (UAE) is very much on top of the race and has already realised a huge part of its landmark architecture and strategic facilities, cities like the Qatari capital Doha – that even advertises “Doha 2030” as a label – still appear to be heavily underconstruction. In countries like the Sultanate of Oman, the establishment of ultra-luxury tourism projects started only recently. On the media level, advancements in this area are enthusiastically hailed and widely broadcast.
The workshop at the Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) in Berlin traces phenomena such as
the widespread construction of artificial islands (meanwhile also in countries like Kuwait), innovative infrastructure and prestige buildings (global container ports, free zones, inter-island causeways, metro connections, theme parks etc.). About 40 active participants will analyse and compare activities of this kind and their rhetoric within a theoretically informed framework from the overall perspective of material and symbolic impacts. Although emphasis is put on the Arabian Peninsula, complementary contributions will also examine the eastern coastline of the Gulf as well as Dubai-inspired experiences elsewhere in the Arab world and Africa. The conference aims to encourage a transdisciplinary dialogue between scholars, artists and practitioners from fields such as Islamic Studies, geography, architecture, culture management, economics, urban studies, history and photography. Parallel to the workshop, a photo and arts exhibitions, a video presentation and presentations of final projects and architectural models for the Gulf region will take place. An urbanistic excursion in Berlin will complement the program.
On 6th of October there will be a Public Talk and Debate (in German) with Michael Schindhelm (writer and former advisor to the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, Government of Dubai, UAE) and Michael Schwarz (Faculty of Engineering, Ajman University of Science and Technology, UAE). The event will be open to the public and there will be no fee for interested listeners, however early registration is advised. The venue will be the Otto-Suhr-Saal at the Neues Stadthaus, Parochialstr. 3, in 10179 Berlin-Mitte (metro station: Klosterstraße, U 2 / red line).
The workshop will be held from the 7th to the 10th of October 2010 at the Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient. You are kindly invited to attend the workshop as listening participants. If you intend to participate, please let us know as early as possible since the number of places available is limited. There is no conference fee, but to assure catering for all participants during the conference, we would kindly ask you to pay a small contribution of 15 Euro (8 Euro for students) per day for beverages and snacks upon your arrival. Please indicate the days you intend to attend. Separate registration is requested for participation in the urban excursion (10 + 2 Euro; free for students) and in the conference dinner (20 Euro), both on Friday, the 8th of October.
Wednesday, 6th October 2010, 7 pm, Neues Stadthaus, Otto-Suhr-Saal, Parochialstrasse 3, 10179 Berlin-Mitte
Keynotelectures of the internationalen Workshop "Under Construction: The Material and Symbolic Meaning of Architecture and
Infrastructure in the Gulf Region"
Lectures by Michael Schindhelm (former Consult of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, Government of Dubai, VAE) and Prof. Michael Schwarz (Faculty of Engineering, Ajman University of Science and Technology, VAE), Moderation: PD Dr. Katrin Bromber (ZMO)
Complete Programme of the Workshop
For further information please contact Julian Tadesse ().