Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Call for Submissions: Untitled, 2012

Untitled, the inaugural All Ireland Architectural Research Group (AIARG) conference, seeks to capture the range of architectural research being conducted on the island of Ireland. It is deliberately open-ended such that it will provide a forum in which different types and areas of research can be presented alongside each other.

Accordingly, we invite proposals for analytical and interpretative papers from post-graduate students, academics and practitioners involved in the field of architectural research in Ireland. These papers can be on any aspect of architecture. They should be focused in their intent but also preferably representative of any larger inquiries the candidate is involved in. While many of the papers will presumably deal with the architectural artefacts and culture of Ireland, papers with an international focus are also welcome. The sessions will be organized around themes which become apparent from the submission of abstracts.

The conference should allow us to map contemporary architectural research in Ireland. The aim is to identify gaps in this map, to avoid potential overlaps, to exploit common research interests, and to hopefully explore future collaborations within the architectural research community on the island.

Deadline for submission of abstracts: (400 words) 5 September 2011

Notification of Acceptance: 26 September 2011

Conference: 20th / 21st January 2012

Venue: Dublin School of Architecture, DIT, Bolton Street, Dublin 1

E-mail abstracts to: [email protected] or [email protected]

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Forum for Alternative Belfast 2011 Summer School: Lessons from Mostar (Part 4 of 4)

As part of Forum for Alternative Belfast's 2011 summer school week Senada Demirovic Habibija spoke about post-conflict Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Senada is currently the Senior Advisor for Urban Planning with the City of Mostar. Mostar is located to the south of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the Neretva River and is the largest city in the Herzegovina Region.

Urban Development of Mostar

Senada began her presentation with a brief overview of the city’s history which shed light on how the old town area came to become such a rich multicultural cluster of architectural features.

The city of Mostar can trace its roots back to the Roman period with evidence found during archaeological digs. The medieval period is less well documented and little is known of this period in the city’s history. It wasn’t until the Ottoman period that Mostar began to grow considerably as an urban settlement in the 15th and 16th century.

Panorama of Mostar in 2006.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

"Vertical. Nature. Base." invite

Some details of an exploratory/artistic/dance project being run by Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company's Artistic Director Steve Batts with artist Dan Shipsides. See below a message from Steve inviting participants to a participatory element of the project in the coming weeks:


Hi there!

I'm sending you this email because I think you might be interested in joining in with a wonderful and very unusual project that I'm doing.

If you like to be creative and enjoy the outdoors, walking, climbing, camping this project is for you.

For two weeks, from next Monday, Artist Dan Shipsides and myself are going to be climbing, moving, recording, photographing, videoing, eating and sleeping at a secluded cove in North Donegal as the first part of a project investigating the poetic possibilities in the direct physical engagement with one very particular natural location. From that engagement we will be creating movement, still and moving images, environmental art, stories and ideas.

Part of this project is open for participation.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Forum for Alternative Belfast 2011 Summer School: The Vision (Part 3 of 4)

On Monday 15 August the third summer school run by Forum for Alternative Belfast (FAB) got underway looking at the connection between inner South Belfast and the city centre. Part 3 of the PLACE Blog series this week looks at the main themes arising from the summer school…

Note: I would highly recommend reading the “Setting the Scene” report, if you have not already, before reading the findings of the summer school as it will provide an important background context…

Following five days of collaboration between community representatives, statutory agencies, and the FAB summer school everyone gathered at the Crescent Arts Centre on Friday 19 August for a presentation of the summer school’s findings.

Crescent Arts Centre: Setting for the FAB 2011
Summer School Findings Presentation.
Declan Hill (Architect and Co Director of FAB), introducing the presentation, explained that something very positive had come out of the summer school that was not envisaged at the start of the week. Clearly excited and pleased with the outcome of the summer school Declan claimed that a “real solution” had been found during the course of the week which could be applied not just in south Belfast. The breakthrough was the agreement between everyone that the word ‘road’ could be replaced with the word ‘ street’ - ‘streets for people’. The main theme from this year’s summer school - “Streets not roads”…

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Forum for Alternative Belfast 2011 Summer School: Area Analysis (Part 2 of 4)

Part two of the four part PLACE Blog series focusing on the Forum for Alternative Belfast summer school provides brief analysis of the area between inner south Belfast and the city centre.

This year the summer school focused on the connections between south Belfast and the city centre. To provide some background to this I have selected some of the main connections and considered their performance as inner city streets and successful places.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Crafting a new space for Electric Picnic: two Bucholz McEvoy talks next Wednesday

Above: Merritt Bucholz of Bucholz McEvoy. Image via UL.
Bucholz McEvoy - Craftitecture at Electric Picnic
- Wed 31st August
- Lunchbox Talk at PLACE, 1pm
- Evening Talk at Culturlann Doire, 6pm

We're pleased to team up with Culturlann Doire to bring Bucholz McEvoy to both Belfast and Derry next Wednesday 31st August. Merritt Bucholz and Kevin Walsh will discuss the firm's winning entry to the Electric Picnic Craftitecture competition. Their pavillion, produced with the Galway School of Boat Building, is under construction at the Electric Picnic site for use during this year's festival.

They will deliver their talk at PLACE at 1pm and that evening they travel to the Culturlann to deliver the talk at 6pm.

For full details of the event and booking info:

Monday, 22 August 2011

Forum for Alternative Belfast 2011 Summer School: Setting the Scene (Part 1 of 4)

This week on the PLACE Blog Gary Potter will be reporting on last weeks Forum for Alternative Belfast summer school. Part one will focus on the summer school's 'Setting the Scene' event, followed in part two by an analysis of the chosen area of Belfast and in part three the findings and proposals of the summer school will be outlined. Part four will be a report from the presentation delivered by the summer school's guest speaker for the week - Senada Demirovic Habibija (Senior Advisor for Urban Planning, City of Mostar, Boznia and Herzegovina).

Forum for Alternative Belfast (FAB) is a not-for-profit organization launched in 2009 to explore alternative ways that Belfast might be developed. Each summer FAB hold a summer school to explore these some of these alternative options. In the first summer school the ‘Missing City’ map was produced which highlighted the huge areas of land, often in public ownership, which lay empty and un-used. The following year the summer school produced an alternative vision for the York Street Interchange proposal declaring that it is not just a roads scheme but an urban design opportunity. Alongside the successful summer schools FAB is actively involved with other projects and campaigns to unlock the city’s potential. On Monday 15 August the third summer school run by FAB got underway looking at the connection between inner South Belfast and the city centre.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Call for submissions: weePLACE exhibition cabinet

We are seeking submissions for display in our weePLACE exhibition cabinet at PLACE. Closing date: 31st August.

weePLACE is our cabinet for displaying small exhibitions and installations at PLACE. We're looking for ideas for new exhibits from artists, architects, community groups and more. Work can be in any medium. Work should take as its theme architecture, the built environment or urban design.

Closing date for entries is 31st August 2011. To find out how to submit your work, download a PDF info sheet (64kb).

If These Walls Could Talk - Call For Submissions

Irish Archaeological Research are organising a number of events for Derry~Londonderry's 2013 Capitol of Culture year. One of these projects will be the production of a publication outlining the archaeological history of the city. "If These Walls Could Talk" will include articles focusing on every time period in the development of the city.

To make this happen they are looking for anyone who has excavated in Derry~Londonderry or anyone with an archaeology/history topic on Derry~Londonderry you would like to submit as an article for publication in the book.

If anyone is interested in contributing you can email Irish Archaeological Research with the site/excavation/topic that you want to include. First drafts should be submitted by 1st October 2011.

For more information visit:

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Timetable for Forum for Alternative Belfast Summer School

From the Forum for Alternative Belfast, the timetable for this year's FAB Summer School, taking place at the Ashby Building, Stranmillis. Events highlighted in colour boxes are free and open to the public. (Click to enlarge.)

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Film: 'Thamesmead: 21st Century Town'

A 10-minute preview of a new film by Chocolate Films telling the story of Thamesmead, "the 60’s new town in East London that became synonymous with Clockwork Orange-style violence."

Thamesmead: 21st Century Town from Chocolate Films on Vimeo.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Preview: Art Deco Belfast Tour

In advance of the tours starting this Saturday, our tour guide Frances gives us a taster of the fascinating PLACE Art Deco Belfast walking tour in Belfast in August 2011. Thanks to Arts Extra on BBC Radio Ulster for the interview, and thanks to our volunteer Roisin at PLACE for putting the video together.

Sinclairs Dept Store, one of the buildings on this month's Art Deco tour. Photo by Daniel Donet.
Join us for the Art Deco Belfast tour this August: The Art Deco 2011 season runs from 6th-28th August. For more information and to book tickets, visit

The Westlink: Solution or Problem?

The Westlink (part of the original Belfast Urban Motorway which never was) attracts a wide range of opinion from experts examining the political, engineering and social impact and residents to whom the road is part of everyday life. There is no question that the road is a key route in modern Belfast, but could it have been implemented differently? BBC Radio Ulster's 'The Gathering' (available on iPlayer) examines some of these issues...

How the Belfast Urban Motorway system could have appeared.
In this image you can see the Ormeau Road and the Gasworks.

The Gathering: Episode Three (31 July 2011)
Belfast Urban Motorway 
As the 30th anniversary of the opening of the Westlink passes, John Bennett considers the controversial plans for the Belfast Urban Motorway, and why it never came to fruition.
Three decades ago when the West Link was opened the motorists of Belfast were hoping that the endless queues and jams were at an end. The idea of joining the two main motorways had been part of a much bigger plan called the Belfast Urban Motorway - a six lane, stilt-borne thoroughfare which was to encircle the city and continue across Belfast Lough via a brand new bridge. Alas it never happened! The traffic continued to build up - the jams increased. 
The onset of The Troubles added to the problems and the newly constructed carriageway became a concrete dividing line between communities. 
This week we examine the political, engineering and social problems which have beset the scheme since its inception and ask if the planners could have done better.

The Westlink ('canyon section') as it appears today.
Photo by Wesley Johnston from

The episode is available on iPlayer for 3 more days until Sunday 7th August. Definitely worth a listen!

Click Here for the BBC iPlayer page to listen. (Length: 25 Mintues)

Also available on iPlayer is a clip from 'Tomorrow's Road' (first broadcast in 1972) which outlined some of the construction challenges with the Belfast Urban Motorway.

Click Here for the BBC iPlayer page to listen. (Length: 2 Minutes)

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Animating buildings in Liverpool

New Museum Liverpool animated with projections. Photo via

Here's a video of a spectacular animation projected by Czech outfit The Macula on the Liver Building for its 100th anniversary celebrations:

Luminous Flux from the macula on Vimeo.

And another on New Museum Liverpool to mark its grand opening:

NML from the macula on Vimeo.