From 10 to 18 October, Rome hosted the first ever SPAM (Settimana del Progetto di Architettura nel Mondo, week of the architectural project in the world) - Dreamcity, an international festival organized by the Roll of Architects in Rome. Over nine days, numerous events, exhibitions and workshops saw over 120 guests from Italy and across the world taking part, many of them well-known names including Daniel Libeskind, Alessandro Melis, Jürgen Mayer, Pedro Campos Costa, Mario Bellini, Gerard Loozekoost from UNStudio, Kristina Knauf from MVRDV, Yosuke Hayano from MAD Architects and local names Alvisi Kirimoto, TStudio, Insula, It’s, Nemesi and Labics.
The rich program welcomed about 4,500 people daily, following the opening event to unveil an installation by Guido Iannuzzi for the Centenary of Bauhaus (on display at MAXXI from 25 October) and to inaugurate three Spam Exhibitions, two of which will remain open until early November. One of the hot topics at the festival was precisely the “City of Rome”, with its urban and social development over the centuries explored in a series of viewings - labelled the Forma Urbis film festival - of works by cinematic maestros such as De Sica, Fellini, Petri, Germi, Scola, Monicelli, Risi and Pasolini at Casa dell’Architettura. In parallel to these events, from 11 October for seven days, Spam Lab took place, a workshop for 60 young people from around the world selected through a specific call. Participants had the opportunity to work with three tutors - Orazio Carpenzano, Manuel Aires Mateus and Gianluca Peluffo - to create new architectural visions for three areas in Rome (Via Giolitti, Mercato dei Fiori and Cittadella Giudiziaria, which is also the subject of an international architecture competition). The final parts to these busy days included Spam Book, Spam Maps, Spam Kids and Young Architects. The goal of the festival was to bring together leading lights in urban and social regeneration to give concrete form to high potential innovative ideas.
During the festival, even General Gambardella, Director of the Task force for the enhancement and disposal of the Ministry of Defense’s non-residential buildings, reiterated the importance of these questions, focusing specifically on how the ministry is acting and investing to improve the relationship between built areas and green spaces. The final day of SPAM saw the announcement of the creation of a national public/private Platform for Urban and Social Regeneration. In a paradigm of driving forward new social inclusion policies and using architecture as a tool for the renaissance of the city, the goal is for this platform to act as an incubator and accelerator for projects.