Exhibition: The Renewal of Dwelling



We are pleased to invite you to the opening of the exhibition The Renewal of Dwelling: European Housing Construction 1945 – 1975, which will take place on Tuesday, 19 November 2019, at the Oris House of Architecture (Kralja Držislava 3) at 6 p.m. 
Most of the existing housing in Europe was constructed between 1945 and 1975. This is due to both the rebuilding of Europe after the destructions of the Second World War and the economic boom that began in the later 1950s. The exhibition The Renewal of Dwelling addresses the construction of apartment buildings in Europe and its historically evolved standards, conventions and norms as well as the search for new forms of housing, innovative possibilities of technology and construction, and alternative aesthetic ideals. It focuses on the question how a fundamental renewal of dwelling and its architectural realization could succeed. Undertaking this study today is highly topical against the backdrop of the current lack of public initiatives for housing in Europe.
The exhibition presents the results of the research seminar Wohnen in Europa (Housing in Europe) by architecture students at Technische Universität Darmstadt and is realized in cooperation with ETH Zürich. It shows some seventy architecturally outstanding but internationally little known apartment buildings in Brussels, Zagreb, Cologne, Oslo, Porto, Lyon and Athens. Comparing these projects reveals the tension between international ideals and the particularist efforts of individual cities and groups of architects. The exhibition groups the housing construction projects of the European postwar period into six thematic fields. This classification is based on the comparative approach of the study. The focus is not on the individual cities or on the chronological sequence of the buildings but rather on the themes that shaped European housing construction between the international debates and the local refractions of it. 
The layout of the exhibition space serves as a living archive to inform new approaches. From the look back to the heyday of housing in the nineteen-fifties through nineteen-seventies, the exhibition seeks to influence future developments that are innovative under the current circumstances and demands on housing.

I believe that the house should be society's most elaborate and luxurious product; houses, not monuments (...). because houses account for 75 per cent of the built environment.
- TAKIS ZENETOS: Takis Ch. Zenetos 1926–1977, Architecture in Greece Press, Athens, 1978

Exhibition The Renewal of Dwelling is part of the research project Housing in Europe undertaken by Prof. Dr. Elli. Mosayebi and Dipl. - Ing. Michael Kraus at the chair for Design and Housing at Technical University Darmstadt.
Co-hosts of the opening: