Geddes Visiting Fellows: Andrew Herscher

  • Thursday, March 16, 2017 - 18:00 to 19:00

  • Adam House, Adam House Lecture Theatre
    3 Chambers Street
    EH1 1HT

We are delighted to announce the public lecture of Andrew Herscher, one of ESALA's Geddes Visiting Fellows in 2016-17.

Trained as an architect and historian of architecture, Andrew Herscher works on the spatial politics of humanitarian and human rights issues, displacement and migration, race and identity, and contemporary art and architecture. He has also co-initiated a number of collaborative public projects, including the Detroit Unreal Estate Agency, We the People of Detroit Community Research Collective, Detroit Resists, and the San Francisco-based Commune Research Commune. Among his publications are Violence Taking Place: The Architecture of the Kosovo Conflict (Stanford University Press, 2010); The Unreal Estate Guide to Detroit (University of Michigan Press, 2012); Spatial Violence, co-edited with Anooradha Iyer Siddiqi (Routledge, 2016), and Displacements: Architecture and Refugee (Sternberg Press, forthcoming).  He is currently Creative Cities Fellow at the Stanford Arts Institute at Stanford University and Associate Professor at the University of Michigan.

Entitled “The Architectural Imagination,” the U.S. Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Biennale of Architecture exhibited “new speculative architectural projects commissioned for specific sites in Detroit but with far-reaching application for cities around the world.” According to the curators of the Pavilion, these projects demonstrated “the power of architecture to construct culture and catalyze cities.” “The Architectural Imagination” was itself imagined during Detroit’s post-emergency management restructuring—a moment when radical urban austerity policies have been yielding large-scale displacements of working-class and disadvantaged communities of color. How did “the architectural imagination” as staged in the U.S. Pavilion relate to those displacements? What can this relation tell us about the definition and deployment of “creativity” in the contemporary city? What does the U.S. Pavilion imply about the right to the “creative city”? And how could this right be understood differently? I will explore these and some related questions, focusing on their proposition by Detroit Resists, a coalition of artists, architects, and activists working on behalf of an inclusive, equitable, and democratic city.

This event is free and open to all.

About Geddes Visiting Fellows

Geddes Visiting Fellows bring a fresh perspective to teaching, practice and thinking in the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA) at ECA.

As well as speaking publicly about their own work, they critique undergraduate and postgraduate coursework and give seminars to staff and students.

Previous Geddes Visiting Fellows and their public lectures include Carlos Arroyo (Sustainable Exuberance, 1st April 2014), Perry Kulper (Estranged Fluctuations, 5th February 2015), Robin Moore and Nilda Cosco (One Health: intergenerational design strategies for engaging children with nature in cities, 11th March 2015), and Alan Short (The Recovery of Natural Environments in Architecture, 31st March 2014). The post facilitates engagement with teaching and research at the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA) at ECA.

While in Edinburgh, Andrew Herscher will also be reviewing work by postgraduate and research students, and giving a seminar in ESALA’s research seminars series on Wednesday 15th March.

In addition to Andrew Herscher, this year’s Geddes Visiting Fellows include Philip Goad and Luis Callejas.