Is it possible to talk about gentrification in the mountains? And, if so, what impact does it have on the land and traditions? And can sustainable, green tourism be regarded as a resource? These are the main themes that will be addressed on September 23-24 in Borca di Cadore, in Italy’s Belluno area, at the fifth cycle of Alpine Architecture Meetings, promoted and organized by the Edoardo Gellner Cultural Association. The conference and parallel events will be held in the central location of the Hotel Boite, in the former Eni Village in Borca di Cadore, and will be free to attend, subject to reservation.
The theme of this year’s event is Order/Disorder, a reminder for planners, architects, and designers – as well as for tourism professionals and the public – about the changes happening in the Alpine landscape and ecosystem caused by a series of both internal and external factors. The sessions will discuss gentrification in these settings, which are increasingly subject to conflict between nature and the actions of modern society.
According to event organizers, the Edoardo Gellner Cultural Association, this process of gentrification started some decades ago and is still ongoing, continuing to bring about huge changes to the socio-economic structures of these mountain areas. The event is presented with the support and sponsorship of the Belluno PPC Chamber of Architects, the Belluno Dolomites Architecture Foundation, and representatives from the Faculty of Arts and Design from the Bolzano Libera Università.
Academics and professionals will discuss these changes, which have led to numerous disputes and, in particular, differences between areas that were once homogeneous, as certain places become highly tourist oriented and others remain neglected by the public. And tourism will be a key issue in discussions since, if tailored towards sustainable and respectful practices, it has the potential to make a difference for these areas and become an invaluable economic and social resource.
Like previous years, the program extends over two days. The event begins with the architecture conference on Saturday, September 23, sponsored by the Belluno PPC Chamber of Architects and the Belluno Dolomiti Architecture Foundation. This will be followed in the evening and throughout the next day by a series of parallel events, organized in collaboration with EASA Italia (European Architecture Students Assembly) and the Dolomiti Blues&Soul Festival.
A few highlights include a gospel concert at 9:00 p.m. on Saturday at the Nostra Signora del Cadore church, a guided tour of the former Eni Village in Borca di Cadore at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday, and the screening of the documentary Villaggio ENI – un piacevole soggiorno nel futuro at 8:00 p.m. on Sunday 24th at 8pm in the Cadore di Cadore campsite gym.
Guests and speakers at the sessions will include Pietro Cesari, an architect specializing in 20th-century corporate architecture and the influence of corporations on the dynamics of urban governance; Giovanni Semi, full professor of urban sociology at the University of Turin and writer; Giacomo Longo and Andrea Simon of Mimeus Architettura, a collective of architects active in the Primiero Valley that focuses on the theme of Alpine architecture in the current socio-economic context; Adriano Oggiano, an architect who specializes in landscape; Daniela Keck, an architect active in the Stuttgart area and colleague of Peter Zumthor, an expert in raising awareness about sustainable living; and Johanna Fink, professional in the field of Alpine hospitality and owner of the Briol chalet in Barbiano, Alto Adige.
They will be joined by Kuno Prey, a prominent professor and dean at various universities, including Bolzano’s Libera Università, where he contributed to the foundation of the Faculty of Arts and Design; Maria Tedd, a designer, graphic designer, illustrator, and teacher at the Ludum elementary school of Cagliari, where she teaches Design Approach, a teaching method that involves both a broad and in-depth study of applied arts and design; Michele Merlo, an architect and colleague of Edoardo Gellner, president and founder of the Edoardo Gellner Architetto Cultural Association; and Davide Maffei, a multitalented director and author of numerous documentaries on architecture and design, including the one to be screened on Sunday 24 at this year’s event.
Location: Hotel Boite, Borca di Cadore, Belluno, Italy
Date: September, 23th-24th
Register in person event here
Individual photo credits are included in each gallery image