We wrapped up our lecture series at the Academie van Bouwkunst last night. We were lucky to be able to access the cinema of the Film Academy for a double screening of two incredibly different views on the modern project. The first, The Pruitt Igoe Myth, a documentary by Chad Freidrichs. A compelling film which is a must see for any students of urban history, the film chronicles the ill-fated development of the Pruitt Igoe housing complex in St. Louis. Built in 1952 it only lasted 20 years before it was demolished. The film highlights the multitude of social and political circumstances which played out in St. Louis during the Pruitt Igoe era. We see and hear from the original residents how this broad range of factors led to the demise of the social housing project.
Finally we rounded the course off with a screening of Jacques Tati’s Playtime (1967) providing us with an alternative and hilarous take on modernism and the generic city. Many thanks to the students and guest speakers over the past weeks who made the course so enjoyable to teach.