Going Against the Grain: A New Urban Seam
A series of discrete, buttress-like architectures embedded in a carved, subterranean landscape through the neighbourhood of Little Italy, Manhattan, referencing rituals lost to gentrification.
Enabled by the process of research through making, the thesis reveals the island of Manhattan as a palimpsest of cartographies. These cartographies evidence the role of neoliberal politics through de-industrialisation, redlining and urban renewal in both the formation of Little Italy and the contemporary phenomenon of hyper-gentrification which threatens to eradicate the traditions and character of this neighbourhood. As the thesis asserts a position where creation supersedes demolition, it identifies vacant condominiums as opportunistic moments of programmatic interventions, where a series of discrete architectures mould, route and rebound into this newly excavated Scapeland (landscape), welcoming the fringes of the Little Italy enclave to bask in the gloriousness of their “undesirability” amongst the newly formed public landscape.
Collaborators: Agata Woloszyn