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Collaboration: n/a

Participants: 50
Location:  Betts Centre House, Dhanmondi, Dhaka

Duration: 4 hours (evening)

"We’re not simply observers of this spectacle, but are ourselves a part of it, on the stage with the other participants. Most often, our perception of the city is not sustained, but rather partial, fragmentary, mixed with other concerns. Nearly every sense is in operation, and the image is the composite of them all”

- Kevin Lynch

Capturing the City was participatory discussion instigated by Freiraum Kollektive that featured invited speakers and guests working as architects or within communities on the ground in Bangladesh. There were presentations from Kashef Chowdhury (URBANA), Saif-ul Haque, PARAA, Dipshikha, Dr Nilafur, Sujaul Kahn and the Kapaeeng Foundation. UPPR and AfH Bangladesh also joined us on the evening.

The presentations covered individual attitudes to fieldwork, research, representation, constraints, frameworks and how to engage in sensitive contexts. The dialogue was interwoven with relevant case studies and projects. We asked the questions: How to map the city? What challenges are facing architects in Bangladesh? How, as architects and activists can we address them?

The event became a platform for voicing collective experiences and ideas regarding the urbanisation of Bangladesh with specific reference to Chittagong, where we had spent a month-long research period. The workshop as platform to gather, engage and develop conversations between designers, theorists and activists was a concept which Freiraum Kollektive explored the subsequent year in our Silk Road project.

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