Bureau for Cultural Analysis organizes a panel talk about the suburban shopping mall. Long declared dead, it has resurrected in other urban typologies. With Mark Pimlott (TU Delft), Natascha Meuser (author Architektur im Zoo) and Gesina Roters (Brand strategy agency DAY).
Het Nieuwe Instituut
3015 CB Rotterdam
Free, registration via Tickets
Why still bother talking about shopping malls? Ever since the turn of the millennium, many have proclaimed the death of this hallmark of post-war American culture. However, the logic of a strategically developed enclosed space that functions — or camouflages — as a public environment, has not become obsolete at all. Theme parks, zoos and museums all apply the mall’s spatial tropes to great effect. What can be learned from them?
Mallification is a two-year research project initiated by Janno Martens, Laurens Otto and Jacques Heinrich Toussaint of Bureau for Cultural Analysis. The project traces the physical and digital developments of the shopping mall. Next to this panel talk, also a pop-in expo is presented in the foyer, showing Harun Farocki's film The Creators of Shopping Worlds in an immersive installation.
Mark Pimlott is an architectural designer, visual artist and author. He is currently assistant professor of Architectural Design (Interior) at Delft University of Technology. Pimlott's research concerns public interiors, and in particular ‘very large and extensive or continuous interiors’ — something we know all too well from shopping malls, airports and museums. Reasoning from his book Without and Within: Essays on Territory and the Interior, hewill be able to shed light on the various ways in which large interiors function and have evolved over the years.
Natascha Meuser is an architect, writer, and professor at Hochschule Anhalt Dessau. She co-directs DOM Publishers, which recently published her influential history of zoo architecture Architektur im Zoo. It grounds the architectural theory and offers a typology of the place know as both prison, theatre and museum: the zoo. She analyses the different generations of the zoo, from colonial to blank, from functional to 'natural', to its current spectacular stage. Any similarities with the trajectory of the mall?
Gesina Roters is a partner at DAY, a strategy and design agency which creates identities for brands, products, and places. It recently redesigned the Van Gogh Museum shop, ice-skating rink Thialf and the Eindhoven Airport terminal. She will analyse current and future typologies of the shopping mall, and bring in practical examples of the ways in which physical and digital spaces determine each other.
Supported by Mondriaan Fund and Goethe Institut.