KIT, Geb. 20.30, -1.025 UG


Aug 03 2020


14:00 - 17:15



Phantastic Urban Transport Landscapes 
of the 1950s/60s


The years around 1960 saw an extraordinary upsurge in futuristic ideas in nearly every field of technology. Boundless possibilities of atomic power or fantastic travels in space, cities on the moon or under the sea were imagined and found a welter of medial representations. Urban districts appeared as systems of „machines for living“ (Le Corbusier) and connecting mobility webs. The focus of this workshop is on the combination of transport utopias and planning ideas for cities of the future. Typical fantastic urban city landscapes were complex multi-level living and mobility spaces, combining architectural and urban planning concepts with new rail transport systems (Alwegbahn), hybrid public/private modes (cabin systems), new forms of individual mobility (flying cars) and integrating existing means of transport in new ways (helicopters). Most of these imagined futures were functionalistic and technocratic, fired by a fascination for cybernetics and total planning. Politically, there were astonishing parallels of imagination and iconography on both sides in the Cold War, regardless of political divergences. Socially, city transport ideas oscillated between rapid transport for undifferentiated masses and new mobility forms for ideal middle class families. The medial representations of city mobility ideas created a new aesthetic, becoming „retrofuturism” of today.



Titelbild: Bürgle 1959 – Das neue Universum, 1959 © Klaus Bürgle
linkes Bild: Bürgle 1968 – Das neue Universum, 1968 © Klaus Bürgle
rechtes Bild: Morrow 1968 – New York, Year 2000 © Gray Morrow/Playboy Magazine

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