THE UTOPIAN CITY PROJECT. GIACOMO CASTAGNOLA AND JAMES ROJAS
THE COLLABORATIVE: A PROJECT OF THE ARTS COUNCIL FOR LONG BEACH AND THE MUSEUM OF LATIN AMERICAN ART
October 22, 2011 to January 15, 2012
Preoccupied with the idea of building an improved society, many architects throughout history have developed projects with the aim of creating the ideal city. Using Long Beach as a model, this exhibition proposes a new exercise in imagining the perfect utopian city of the future. Architect Giacomo Castagnola and Urban Planner James Rojas will collaborate to create an interactive and inhabitable model of Long Beach that will allow the visitors to propose their own ideas for the future of the city. This project will push the boundaries of the conventional architectural model, giving visitors the opportunity to view the city conceptually as well as experience it physically through the senses. By interacting, the visitor’s body becomes an integral piece of the architectural installation.
Giacomo Castagnola, holds a B.A. in architecture from URP in Lima, Peru. Castagnola, who lives and works in Tijuana and San Diego, works in architecture, design and art. In 2004 he established Germen, a design and architecture studio that focuses on exploring the “informal” city through projects of micro-urbanism that utilize the design as the medium to generate relationships between the body and the city. Castagnola has produced several architectural projects and designs in Mexico, the United States, Europe and Asia including SlowTrans Anyang, a public art project developed in South Korea APAP2010, the design of the exhibition platform and furniture for Posición errante: selecciones del archivo de inSite, Ciudad de México (2010) and Olivier Debroise: entre la ficción y el documento, (2011) exhibitions at Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo (MUAC) in Mexico City and Túnel, an intervention project at Instant Herlev Institute, Denmark (2009), among others. Castagnola is currently an M.A. candidate in Art, Culture and Technology (ACT) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.).
James Rojas is an expert in the U.S. on Latino cultural influences on urban design. Rojas is the founder of Place It an organization which he created as a way to engage the community in the urban planning process using creative workshops and interactive site models. His research led to the founding of the Latino Urban Forum, a volunteer grassroots organization of architects, urban planners, and activists interested in improving the built environment of low-income Latino areas through organizing, advocacy and policy. James Rojas was the project manager for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Central Area Team (1997-2010) and Environmental Advisor for Clean Air Action Group in Budapest, Hungary (1993-1996). He holds an M.A in City Planning and an M.A of Science of Architecture Studies from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.).
421 W. Broadway Ave., Long Beach, CA 90802
Tuesday – Friday: 11:00am – 5:00pm
Thursday: 11:00am – 9:00pm
Saturday, Sunday: 11:00am – 6:00pm
Redefining the City
Thursday, November 10, 7:30 - 9:00pm
Charter Screening Room
Join artist Giacomo Castagnola and urban planner James Rojas in conversation with MOLAA Curator Idurre Alonso about the issues presented in the exhibition.