The first time I learned how we all inhabit an acoustic architecture of space,
it was sound traveling across a landscape, contouring objects, carving
between them, bringing forth a movement of bodies through space. You
could stand inside a metal sculpture of a whale, close your eyes; or you could
walk in an underground tunnel toward a concrete echo. The house is an
arrangement of objects with which we move through the world. In this way
we become familiar with a system of echolocation. Children of immigrants
take their houses wherever they go, its sounds patter and shake like a
drawerful of dishes, cups, utensils.
One entrance to the past is through memory—either oral or written. And water. In this case salt water. Sea water. And, as the ocean appears to be the same yet is constantly in motion, affected by tidal movements, so too this memory appears stationary yet is shifting always. Repetition drives the event and the memory simultaneously, becoming a haunting, becoming spectral in its nature.
Haunted by “generations of skulls and spirits,” I wants the bones.
Cities have a soul. A soul made by its essential characteristics, built by its citizens. Since this
soul translates the history of its urban spaces, it should not be erased. As an eternal light, it
must prevail. As must its memory, which entangles with its history. Urban memory is the city
itself, which keeps the marks of its constant processes of transformation and permanence. It´s a
mistake to think we can freeze the urban space.
We understand the urban project as an arena which can unite different historic times,
preserving the soul of the city and at the same time allowing it to move forward and keep its
dynamic character. It is the urban project that can unite past, by the urban heritage, the present
in its social totality. It can also unite the different social groups, by their participation in designing
the city and its transformations.