A Glossary of Urban Voids

Sergio Lopez-Pineiro

15 x 21 cm
240 pages, 30 b/w
ISBN 978-3-86859-604-5


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This book is a critiqued collection of over 200 terms regularly used to name the urban void, from the terrain vague to the buffer zone. As the landscape architect James Corner has pointed out, a void cannot be labeled because “to name it is to claim it in some way.” By listing existing terms, A Glossary of Urban Voids is an attempt to name the unnamable, to define that which should have no precise definition. It records terms, names, and labels used to designate leftover spaces resulting from processes of urban abandonment that originate from some kind of obsolescence or loss. Besides obvious consequences, these processes of abandonment open up the space, liberating it from existing ideological frameworks (such as financial, capital, or cultural frameworks), allowing for divergent spatialities to emerge, and ultimately offering opportunities for the imagination and conceptualization of an alternative type of public space. Using the glossary as a theoretical tool, this book presents the most relevant questions on the issue of the urban void and its potential role as public space.

Interview with Sergio Lopez-Pineiro on our Instagram account:

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Sergio López-Piñeiro (@holesofmatter), the author of "A Glossary of Urban Voids", claims that “an urban void must absolutely remain unnamable in order for it to retain its openness, marginality, and indeterminacy.” But how can the unnamable – something that eludes definition – be defined and discussed? Current times have revealed open spaces in the city to be a valuable resource. So how should a city treat its blank spots in its tissue? What is the potential of an urban void to generate public life? Can the urban void become a vehicle in the post-pandemic approach on the city? We invite you to discover the multilayered research on urban voids from the author himself in this insightful talk. #jovisverlag #interview #aglossaryofurbanvoids

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