14th International Docomomo Conference – Lisbon 2016

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14th International DOCOMOMO Conference

The Modern Movement Towards the Future
Lisbon, Portugal
1-12 September 2016

In pursuit of the mission of docomomo, as updated in the Eindhoven-Seoul Statement 2014, the theme of the 14thInternational docomomo Conference will be Adaptive Reuse. The Modern Movement Towards the Future: The aim is to promote the conservation and (re)use of buildings and sites of the Modern Movement, to foster and disseminate the development of appropriate techniques and methods of conservation and (re)use, and to explore and develop new ideas for the future of a sustainable built environment, based on the past experiences of the Modern Movement.
The Modern Movement has demonstrated its long term legitimacy, as a concept endowed with an extraordinary longevity. Relating technology, form and social commitment to one another, through an optimistic faith in progress, modern architects sought to attain new heights of functionality and flexibility in use. The challenge for today is how to deal with this modern legacy in relation to the continuously changing context of the current times, including physical, economic and functional changes, as well as fast-moving socio-cultural, political and scientific contextual values.Preserving the architectural heritage of the 20th century requires us to take account both of the opportunity and the duty to reuse buildings which have lost their original function, which are physically and/or technically obsolete, and which no longer meet today’s ever-more demanding standards. Such matters as the demand for material and technology reuse and for spatial and functional transformations, and the updating of regulations concerning fire, seismic stability, user safety, energy efficiency and environmental comfort legislation, are all part of the contemporary agenda. This inevitably highlights the question of the value of the existing built fabric, which can be a strong resource that calls for our attention in terms of social, economic and environmental sustainability.In its pursuit of the task of conserving and rebuilding, docomomo must itself be modern and sustainable in order to continue to fulfil the Modern Movement’s social and collective project, as modernity and sustainability are part of the primary nature of Modern Movement project itself. In our view, the Modern Movement still carries on today and into the future, as an ever-present social, spatial and technological project engaged with the community, constantly engaging with the challenge of creating a better place to live.Contributions are invited to put together under discussion themes such as the interrelationship of modernity and modern heritage, economy and energy saving, the social mission of architecture and the responsibility of architects towards the future. These themes are intended to be discussed both as MoMo concepts, to be analysed chiefly through documentation, and as contemporary modern interventions, to be debated in accordance with the needs and conditions of today. As a multidisciplinary platform, this conference aims to investigate a cross-section of subjects that are raised by the challenge of preserving, renovating and transforming the Modern Movement legacy worldwide, alongside with the complex background of today’s changing times. In the end, the goal is to achieve a pluricultural comparison of standards and practices for intervention on 20th century heritage.In pursuit of a holistic approach, the general theme of the conference will be elaborated through eight sub-themes:  1) Landscapes, 2) Cities, 3) Public Spaces, 4) Complexes, 5) Buildings, 6) Construction and Technology, 7) Interior Design and Furniture and 8) Theory.

1) Landscapes
What new challenges are there in the field of landscape conservation? What are the key questions related to modern authenticity in landscape? How did landscape frame the regionalist approach to Modern Movement and its preservation? Which techniques are available nowadays to document landscape? How can we increase awareness of the importance of landscape architecture in the renovation of Modern ensembles and neighbourhoods?

Keywords: Nature; Skyline; Landmarks; Earth; Identity; Ecology; Mapping technologies; Representation; Natural vs. Artificial; Townscapes; Environment.

2) Cities
How can we build innovative cities while preserving architectural heritage? Is it possible to find a balance between sustainable development and urban change? What response can we expect from the property development industry in a context of crisis? Where can we find successful strategies to fight against demolition? What can we learn from the past experiences of the Modern Movement that we can apply today in urban developments?

Keywords: Urbanity; Urbanism; Urban planning; Sustainability; Lifestyle; Infrastructures; Density; Networks; Transport; Mobility.

3) Public Spaces
New attractions and activities are constantly being promoted in order to hold the interest of the public: how can we reconcile innovation with the preservation of recreational areas? How can we manage intervention in areas belonging to many different stakeholders? What are the chief present-day problems in public areas? How should we protect and improve modern urban space?

Keywords: Urban space; Sport; Recreation; Collective; Public; Co-presence; Community; Civil Society; Appropriation; Occupation.

4) Complexes
Complexes are groups of ensembles of buildings that complement each other. As in a living being, when one of the organs has to be taken out, the body struggles to survive. Their sheer size and scale make the renovation of obsolete complexes a long and challenging task, but one with infinite possibilities. Which strategies have succeeded best in the renovation of complexes? Which elements can be removed and which can be added while still preserving unity?

Keywords: Infrastructures; Megastructures; Synergies; Industrial complexes; Mass housing; Health complexes; Sports complexes; Systems; Complex design; Multi-purpose.

5) Buildings
What are the chief motivations that drive people to demolish modern buildings in each different country – and how can we combat these? How can we preserve character and memory in reuse projects? Are the increasing calls for the raising of environmental standards beneficial or harmful to heritage conservation? Which are the most effective new strategies to “design over a design”?

Keywords: Restoration; Conversion; Renovation; Reuse; Occupation; Icon; Monument; Architectural programme; Functionalism; Rationalism.

6) Construction and Technology
What are the most up-to-date technologies that can improve living in modern buildings? Which are the latest technologies to conserve and restore the materiality of modern buildings? Within the decision-making process, how can we deal with “authoritative” changes? What are the most pertinent and recent case studies in modern architectural heritage restoration?  Is it possible to avoid disastrous interventions?

Keywords: Restoration and rehabilitation techniques; Construction details; Energy efficiency; Seismic Retrofit; Legislation impact.

7) Interior Design and Furniture
When a building is reused, what happens to its furniture? Is it possible to conserve the concept of total work of art when a new use is imposed? Is the musealization of entire interior layouts a proper option? How can we reuse a building without destroying its character? How can one preserve modern interior designs and furnishings? How can we find a balance between the interior and its surroundings, the detail scale and the concept of global design?

Keywords:  Total work of art; Atmosphere; Furniture; Lighting; Arts; Paintings; Fashion; Decorative arts.

8) Theory
How present-day concerns influence the historian enquiries to the past? Which theoretical matters are imperative today and why? Which buildings and sites have not yet been thoroughly studied? How the prominent architects of the Modern Movement were educated and which studying activities can we transpose to the future? What new insights can we arrive at concerning modern theories and history of architecture? What is still left to learn from the leading theorists of the 20th Century? What is the future of modern heritage? Can we establish a network of experts to help to act in developing countries where the pressures of rapid growth impel the destruction of Modern Buildings? In the context of a new society substantially based on communication, what is the future of documentation?

Keywords: Authenticity; Ethics; Aesthetics; Unity; Integrity; Market; Society; Hypothesis; Prognostics; Reflexions; Permanence.


May – 28 June 2015 Call for sessions.
31 July 2015 Call for sessions’ notification of acceptance.
3 August – 18 October 2015 Call for papers.
14 December 2015 Call for papers’ notification of acceptance.
1 January 2016 Opening date for registration.
28 February 2016 Full paper submission deadline (1st version).
Registration deadline for speakers and session chairs.
27 March 2016 Deadline for session chairs return papers with comments to speakers.
1 May 2016 Full paper submission deadline (final version).
1-5 September 2016 docomomo Student Workshop
6-9 September 2016 14th International docomomo Conference
10-12 September 2016 doco Tours


docomomo International is pleased to invite you to take part in the 14th International docomomo Conference that will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, from the 6th to 9th September 2016, under the theme Adaptive Re-use. The Modern Movement Towards the Future.

International encourages the submission of session proposals in as comparative and interdisciplinary a form as possible. To give the opportunity to discuss Modern Movement architecture, design and planning at different scales, from a holistic point of view, proposal submissions dealing with the following related sub-themes are encouraged: 1) Landscapes, 2) Cities, 3) Public Spaces, 4) Complexes, 5) Buildings, 6) Construction and Technology, 7) Interior Design and Furniture and 8) Theory.

Please submit your session by sending the Session Proposal Form by 28 June 2015 to docomomo2016@gmail.com.


Structure for the session proposals

  • Title of the session.
  • A description of a coherent and focused Session topic, not exceeding 500 words. It must clarify the goals and the relevance of the Session, define a leading question, key issues, the scientific relevance of the session in the context of recent thinking or debate (i.e., why the topic is timely and important), and a list of potential themes that will particularly fit in with the goals of the session.
  • Up to five keywords.
  • To select one of the subthemes of the Conference in which your session fits in.
  • Proposed session type:

– Regular paper session. A regular session normally consists of four 20 minute paper presentations, plus introduction, discussion and closing comments.
– In addition to regular paper sessions, alternative interactive session formats are encouraged (e.g. pecha kucha sessions, poster sessions, round-tables, etc.) Innovative session formats are welcome.

  • Special requirements (e.g. equipment, room type).
  • Personal details from the session organizer (name, professional affiliation, address, telephone, e-mail address, current Curriculum Vitae).

The Session Organisers/Chairs are responsible for

  • Selecting session abstracts on the basis of their quality and thematic relevance, in collaboration with the Scientific Committee.
  • Reviewing the papers in order to assist the authors improve their contributions for the final upload, before 27 March 2016.
  • Writing the key lecture of the session for the proceedings of the conference by 1 May 2016.
  • Holding the key lecture of the session and chairing the session, through a short introduction on the main goal of the session, a short introduction on each paper, the management of the time schedule and the lead of the discussion.

Session proposals will be selected by the Scientific Committee on the basis of merit and the need to organize a well-balanced programme and according to the following criteria: relevance, novelty/innovation, scientific quality, structure and organization of the session.

docomomo members are encouraged to propose and organize a Session. So, please be sure that your membership is updated. You can regularize the situation at https://docomomo.com/membership.

Scholars can upload only one session proposal.

Chairs are expected to pursue their own institutional or other support to register, and for travel and accommodation. At present, docomomo cannot yet guarantee the possibility of helping with these expenses.

Where insufficient papers have been proposed, a Session may be cancelled by the Scientific Committee after the deadline for abstract submissions.

Picture: Alberto Pessoa, Pedro Cid, Ruy Athouguia, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal, 1969. Gardens by Viana Barreto e Ribeiro Telles. © AFCG, Mário de Oliveira, 1969.

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