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New Geographies 3: Urbanisms of Color

 

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New Geographies 3: Urbanisms of Color
Editor: Gareth Doherty Publisher: Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 2011

Color is a ubiquitous yet essential part of the city, creating and shaping urban form. Who can forget the whites of modernist Brasilia? The greens of historic Cairo? The rosy reds of Petra? The terracottas of South America's shanty towns? The color cacophonies of Times Square and Shinjuku? Colors have a presence over and beyond the objects—buildings, spaces, billboards, artifacts and people—that make up the city. Not only does color give meaning to cities, cities give meaning to color.

Whether carefully coordinated, clashing, or an expression of materials, color is a powerful cultural, economic, and political force in cities. Yet discussions on the city do not usually focus much on color, perhaps because urban colors are too often understood as being beyond any authority or taste or simply dismissed as cosmetic, naive, or intangible. Volume 3 of New Geographies brings together artists and designers, anthropologists, historians, planners, and philosophers with the aim of exploring the potency, the interaction, and neglected design possibilities of color at the scale of the city.



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