Docomomo Tokyo 2020+1 / Discussion is opened: Urbanism and Architecture under/after Covid-19

Docomomo Tokyo
Modernism is frozen / Discussion is opened : Urbanism and Architecture under/after Covid-19

“Docomomo Tokyo Team is opening a discussion for the next Urbanism and Architecture under and after COVID-19 on Facebook, to build a series of online discussion by ZOOM and develop it into one of themes in the International docomomo Conference 2020+1 in Tokyo.
This “+1 year” will give us a great opportunity to find hints for cities and architecture over the world of today in our study on Modernism.

Modernism Is Frozen
This title has double meanings. First, our cities designed by modernism are locked down which is based on industrialism, commercialism, mass traffic and mass housing. On the other hand, Modernism is not just industrialism or mass traffic but a movement that always try to overcome any difficulties.The situation brought by COVID-19 is a crisis not only for our health but also our city and architecture based on Modernism in the both meanings.Le Corbusier showed us principles of Modernism in his projects and theories, like “Le Ville Radiuse.”
Our modern cities and architecture have been designed with the principles as the followings:
1.    Physicality
2.    Openness (Traffic)
3.    Aggregation
You may find the other principles however, no one doubts that these are very essential and integral characters of our cities and the architecture. Tokyo, Paris, London, New York, Shanghai… or any modern cities grew up, attracted peoples and realized the globalization. Modern architecture could challenge and fascinate with these ideas.
COVID-19 attacked cities and the architecture just at these points. Sealed off cities and the architecture loose physicality, openness and aggregation. People loose physical relation, close their traffic and stay home, and are forced to be fragmented.Not only principles of early Modernism but all wisdom in the history of city and architecture are faced on the crisis. Christopher Alexander said “a city is not a tree” and told us “semi-lattice structure” can be found and should be designed in our city. Robert Venturi taught us the complexity of architecture. Cordoned cities and the architecture loose the complexity and gets close to a “tree-structure.”

Or you may say, we have already begun to loose these character even if COVID-19 didn’t happened because of IT revolution. We have already have shopping market, movie theater and even offices online. Traffic is too heavy load for natural environment. We were ready to give up aggregation in a real city. The situation under and after COVID-19 might just accelerate the IT-Urbanism.
Nevertheless, we definitely know that we can never live without physicality, openness and aggregation. We can live only with our physical body, get freedom only with openness and keep our insured life only with aggregation.

We are required to begin to review the history of Modernism. We need to discuss what we can learn and inherit from modernism and transit it to the next age.
We will find what we should preserve.
We will request you to join the discussion.

First, please post any ideas related with the theme on Facebook.”

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