|International Summer School 2012 «Event City»|
July 27–August 11, 2012 in Riga and Cesis
Cities are formed around events and rituals and their processions. Agricultural, seasonal, social, political, commercial, religious, even mythological festivities - there is no living city without action or without program.
Humans want ritual. For rituals they build some of the most incredible structures on the earth. Over millennia, they organise their lives and built environment around them. Rituals give shape, form and meaning to social relationships, while human settlements become vessels for entire social assemblies - event cities.
As rituals give rise to architecture, so architecture in turn perpetuates new rituals. The Summer School will explore this exchange in either or both directions. Moreover, it will position itself among collisions of programs and spaces, in which the two intermingle, combine and implicate one another in the production of events.
The static notions of form and function long favoured by modernists will be replaced by attention to the contemporary forms of life that occur inside and around buildings - to the movement of bodies, to activities, to cultural codes, to associated material worlds, to aspirations, to the social and political dimension of architecture.
In 2012, the International Summer School is going to take place in Cesis, one of the oldest towns in Latvia. It lies in Vidzeme Upland near the winding valley of river Gauja.
In its historical development Cesis has gone through periods of growth as well as shrinkage. 800 years ago it rose as an important trade centre in Livonia, experienced a heavy decline in the 18th century due to wars, fires and plague, and managed to recover and prosper in later centuries. Its favourable position in road and railway network advanced economic development; scenic surroundings and rich historical heritage attracted vacationers.
During the Soviet era Cesis escaped the heavy industrialization that changed many other towns, instead it set an aim of becoming the cultural capital of Vidzeme region. Today Cesis, as most mid-sized towns in Latvia, is seeing its residents move away and neighbouring towns of Valmiera and Sigulda becoming more competitive with their sports, educational and recreational infrastructure. In response to the negative demographic trends Cesis puts emphasis on creating events that bring a lively buzz into its streets – festivals of arts, music and revival of medieval customs.
Final Presentations of Workshops