Knowing the city: between representation and orientation
(Supervisors: Mark Cousins, Pier Vittorio Aureli)
This research is about the relation between the knowledge of the city that comes from representation and the one that comes through orientation –this is, between the poles set by a formal, technical cartography and that of an everyday practice of the city. It will mainly focus on nineteenth-century London, exploring several professions, practices and systems that were, as this thesis will argue, the actual means for modern urban densification. By studying how the development of systems of administration, infrastructure, services, circulation, and distribution constituted the actual bridge between ideal, abstract diagrams and the physical city, it will also try to unravel how they informed or imparted the linguistic knowledge through which the city could be understood and grasped. By examining a variety of practices, this research will critically question the intricate relation between representation and orientation, moving away from straightforward causality and into much more nuanced interpretations.
Gabriela García de Cortázar Galleguillos is a registered architect in Chile, BA Universidad de Chile (Hons., 2006), and MA in Architectural History, Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, UK (Distinction, 2010), for which she received the Becas Chile Scholarship and the Abbey-Santander UCL scholarship. She has worked both as architect and academic in Chile, and exhibited there and abroad. She started her doctoral research at the AA in 2011 with a scholarship from the Chilean government.