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The Dark Turn in Contemporary Urbanism

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk


Invitation from Charles Waldheim to give a talk based on my book, Dark Matters: A Manifesto for the Nocturnal City, and discuss an emerging field, The Dark Turn in Contemporary Urbanism.

Positioning darkness as a positive agent for landscape architecture, planning and urban design brings forth an urgent need to better understand the value of different coexistences of light, shade and dark for the public realm. To rethink urban places after dark we need to turn our attention to those elements that are often underrepresented or excluded from architecture and urbanism. This will enable us to provide a socially equitable and environmentally desirable future that promotes civic life differently from business-as-usual approaches. This will also help us to better understand the non-anthropocentric implications of what we design, how we design and why. In short, we live in multispecies cities whether we acknowledge it or not. It is time for us to embrace the darkness and its agency within contemporary urbanism.

External organisation (External collaborations)

NameHarvard Graduate School of Design, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Country/TerritoryUnited States