Paradigm Islands: Manhattan and Venice: discourses on architecture and the city

Teresa Stoppani

Research output: Book/ReportBook - authored


About architecture and the city, built, imagined and narrated, this book focuses on Manhattan and Venice, considering architecture as an intellectual and spatial process rather than a product. The book explores in depth the association of Manhattan and Venice in the construction of the urban space, its buildings and projects, and its narratives. The making of the two cities is explored as a slow and collaborative process that produces space as well as perceptions and representations of it. Architecture is considered here as a spatial practice that affects the physical environment but is also informed by other space-defining forces - narratives, legislation, social mores, and the investigations performed in the visual arts. In particular, the book examines the experiments and the difficulties of the modernist project and its critical reconsiderations throughout the 1970s to the 1990s - opening the possibility for a reconsideration of these 'paradigm islands' to address contemporary forms of making in urban architecture. A critical re-examination of the making of Manhattan and Venice provides a background to address the dynamic redefinition and making of space today. The gradual processes of adjustment, a constantly changing dense space, the emphasis on forming rather than on figure, the incorporation of new forms and languages through their adaptation and transformation, make both Manhattan and Venice, in different ways, the ideal places to contextualize and address the issue of an architecture of the dynamic. Key words: Manhattan. Venice. Urban paradigms. Architecture as a process. Urban diagram. Crisis of modernism.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAbingdon, UK
Number of pages290
ISBN (Print)9780415561853
Publication statusPublished - 22 Oct 2010


  • Manhattan
  • Venice
  • Urban paradigms
  • Architecture as a process
  • Urban diagram
  • Crisis of modernism
  • Contemporary Architecture
  • Architecture and the Arts
  • Written architecture.


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