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Shrinking Cities in Romania (2 Volumes)

06-05-2019 01:19 PM CET | Arts & Culture

Press release from: gisela graf communications

Shrinking cities are a worldwide phenomenon. While megacities keep on growing, the mid-sized and smaller cities are often left to deal with dwindling population numbers. These shrinking processes can also trigger uncontrollable dynamics. They are often looked upon by governments and administrations with a degree of trepidation, sometimes even becoming a taboo issue. Ignoring the phenomenon has become quite common in a country that is especially impacted by it due to the large scale of emigration: Romania.

The two-volume standard work Shrinking Cities in Romania, edited by the Romanian architect Ilinca Păun Constantinescu, is a case study which looks at the decline of the cities in this country some thirty years after the collapse of the Warsaw Pact. The political and economic conditions across Eastern Europe changed drastically and the affected countries were suddenly confronted with a capitalist market economy. The current globalisation model may succeed in stimulating overall economic growth, but this is done at the cost of social and spatial division. This research work provides a deep understanding of these issues. In order to achieve this, the editor assembled a team of academics, artists, architects and urban planners in an interdisciplinary research project. In the first volume the authors research and analyse the phenomenon of shrinking cities, the second volume then goes a step further and formulates solutions to these issues and envisions perspectives for these marginalised places.

This book wants to sensitise on the current and all-pervasive, but altogether too-little discussed topic: the socio-cultural, physical, economical and demographic decline of cities as a phenomenon that is especially wide-spread in Romania, but must be seen in a global context. It brings together the different facets of urban change in a multi-layered kaleidoscope, designates and identifies the multitude of causes. The results of this research work can also be adapted to other regions of the world.

This work has come forth from a well received exhibition that was held at the National Museum of Contemporary Art (MNAC) in Bucharest in 2016 and illustrates and expands on the topics that were introduced there. The research work was awarded the 2014 AD Astra Prize and the 2017 Architectural Prize in the area Visions and Research.

Ilinca Păun Constantinescu (ed.)
Shrinking Cities in Romania Research and Analysis (Vol. 1), Responses and Interventions (Vol. 2)
With introductions by Philipp Oswalt and Tim Rieniets
210 × 230 mm, 824 pages
300 images, soft cover
ISBN 978-3-86922-372-8 (English/Romanian)
€ 48,00 / CHF 58,60
May 2019. DOM publishers, Berlin

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