location: turku, finland time: 1970s, 1980s i was traveling all the afternoon. infinite curves and spirals in this mediocre port city. then i’ve seen these houses finally, and got off from the bus. varissuo was built on a meadow. the finnish people call it a problematic district. 32 percent of the inhabitants are immigrants. i am walking in a dreamlike ghetto in new york. finally...
location: turku, finland time: 1970s my fingers tend to type funland constantly. who would say something like that about this sinking rainy land. here immigrants live mixed with students, slava says happily in a downtown café when i mention where i go: my home! i am traveling with the star-shaped cookies got from her, with my 2.50 euros ticket to adventure. there is nothing here, the bus turns...
location: turku, finland time: 1960s, 1970s if the múmins had lived on a housing estate, that would have looked like this one: maybe just the illusory weather, but lauste looked like a tiny cartoon empire, where nothing remains on its place for long time, and building bricks are placed on the ground in the playful oblivion. because, eventually, nobody was there, only a girl with an umbrella,...
location: turku, finland time: 1970s the largest suburb of turku, with 20 percent of immigrant population. i get off the bus n18 a bit frightened, no idea why here, after all east europe. but nothing happens, really nothing, a few people walking on the streets, one group of kids, pensioners, grownups walking dogs, hardly any sign of life, because these places are not built for that, however...
no answer petrograd
location: õismäe, tallinn, estonia time: 2010 november i don’t think i’ll ever be as happy as i was in that autumn in estonia
location: minsk, belarus time: 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s… tsentralny, sovietski, pershamaysky, partyzansky, zavodski, leninski, kastrichnitsky, moskovski, frunzenski… whatever. all sounds beautiful. i couldn’t find out where we are, street names are rare commodities in this land. but there are colorful tetris facades, rocket playgrounds, multicolor televisions, and all the shapes of...
location: minsk, belarus time: 18 July 2012 welcome to minsk, where the past has not ended, concrete skyscrapers are perpetually being constructed, light coloured high rises representing constant serenity, but cannot hide the overall greyness emanating from the city. welcome to minsk, where the distant blocks glare like forgotten ruins of ancient towns in the accidental sunlight. ...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1960-70s next to wilanów palace, the polish versailles. land of the pastels, bathrooms, balconies. green trees, concrete overpasses, loud city highways. the diplomat housing estate. the glass covered staircases. the riverside and the polish caramel candies. land of the early nineties, the memories before our birth. the rain. the future. ...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1977 it is wonderful again: since the estate is built by the housing cooperative gocław airport, the four subdistricts of gocław are named of different polis aircraft pieces: iskra (spark) jantar (amber) orlik (eagle) wilga (oriole) a secret sentence about socialism written into the urban landscape. and in the middle of the estate there is a lake called...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1980 going further on the bus, we arrive to a land even more out of reality. this is the postwar world of pastel lights reflecting eternal greyness. greyness is usual everywhere in warsaw, but here it looks like the official atmosphere ordered by the commanders of the neighbourhood. houses are tall and continue in endless fragmented structures, the strong...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1977 it’s easy to say ursynów, although it is an unforeseeble area of different housing estates, where innumerable buses carry the passengers to unknown places. ursynów never ends, or the buses have round lines. ghetto and garden city in one. i have a hunch that it was the greyest place i’ve ever been, or i just don’t remember to romania...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1970s we don’t know anything about this place except that piasków means sand, which shows the less creative sort of naming, and that it is located next to chomiczówka, separated by a nice tram track. at some point i could even experience that kind of sacralized space which sometimes appears in a random corner of conrete blocks, always next to the...
location: warsaw, poland time: 1975-80 chomiczówką, chomiczówką, pierwsze wino, pierwsza wódka, mean that anything, (obviously something with vodka) that song shows that there should be some character in this neighbourhood, but i didn’t experience so much of that. it was just a new example of colorful toy cities arisen from rehabilitation programs or the planner’s fantasy. but...
location: hamburg, germany time: ca. 1970 surprisingly ghetto-like landscape when we get off the s-bahn, that becomes different step by step. slowly transforming into a decent post 70s garden estate… stalin style blocks… little streams and good pedestrian connections… moderately exciting facades. yeah, that’s pretty hard. le corbusier in the...
location: hamburg, germany time: 1969-73 good to know that western europe is also keeping secrets for us. the keyword is diversity: more form, more material, more colour. and the condition of the buildings of course. but it’s still far away from the gloss of helsinki suburbs. and we can’t forget about the water, as in any point of this city. grand waters and frightening distances,...
location: riga, latvia time: 1980-1991 zolitūde is on the ‘buda’ side of riga. sorry, it’s really a local approach from budapest, it means something nicer, calmer, hillier, grassier part of the river in a city, relatively of course. it is also from the last moments of soviet times, when architecture seemed to find itself in a colorful postmodern way, but it was...
they’re moving towards you with their colors all the same time: 04.12.2010. location: from purvciems to mežciems, riga, latvia there is a 19th century worker district near the centre of riga, called grizinkalns. it’s brown and rusty and noble, details maybe later. in this neighbourhood the buildings are tied to each other by overcrossing trolley wires, and time to time, light...
location: riga, latvia time: 1980-85 never seen such a rich collection of forms in a housing estate before! really delightful experience after a lot of grey concrete and poor design. it looks like for the 80s architects got bored with unattractive housing projects, and they also had the chance to plan buildings as smart as possible. we can tell about many block buildings, that they are lego...
the wilderness downtown
time: 23.11.2010. location: lasnamäe, tallinn, estonia take the bus number 65 in a gloomy late autumn day. bus 65 is like a sightseeing line to lovers of housing estates (~ catastrophe tourists) it leaves from the airport, and meanders long long time in the deepest greyness. traveler would think that it is the end of the world, but bus takes a curve and a new endless row of blocks appears to the...
location: budapest, hungary time: 1950-1980 firstly some background knowledge. csepel is an island on the river danube, situated close to the historical budapest. it was an industrial area from the beginning of the 20th century, and in the 1950s it became a shining comet of socialist industry. not an accident that it is usually called ‘red’ csepel, referring to the communist roots. and the...
location: Budapest, Hungary time: 1972 - 84 there is a housing estate in south buda, where houses are in pastel colours. there is sunset, june, everytime. there are going fast and smooth buses, with green number on their side: 150 and 250. we are walking on the bachelor street, turn to fiancé street and reach poets park, after we turn right to best man street. houses are facing...
location: budapest, hungary time: 1968-78 1960s. we are close to the ‘end of modernism’, 1972, the explosion of pruitt-igoe, and architects begin to discover even in hungary, that something is wrong with monotonous housing blocks. they offer the idea of urban city for the next large housing estate project in budapest, which simply means a city where traditional urban atmosphere and...
järgmine peatus lõpp-peatus