In 2013, I started a collaboration with Zeppelin Association in Bucharest, active in the fields of architecture, urban planning, design, research and publishing, by providing management advice and support for the development of the projects Connected. Things about future, cities and people, a partnership with organisations from Romania, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and Carol Factory/ Halele Carol, an initiative of reconversion of an industrial space in a creative space. In the frame of this project I also developed a module of educational activities for children and families in the spaces of the Carol Factory, which took place in June 2015.
Constantin Goagea, one of the project creators talks about it in Zeppelin magazine #131:
< Hesper S.A. is a factory in the southern part of the central area of Bucharest, formerly known as Wolf, then Steaua Roșie (Red Star) Factory. For over two years now, Zeppelin works, in partnership with Hesper, to a model of rehabilitation for these spectacular buildings built in 1887: two years of research right on the site, in the Netherlands, Norway, Germany and Russia about how such a place can be transformed, meetings and discussions, business plans, strategies and not as the least important, action.
Following the conferneces and party opening last year officially the place as an event area, 10 rock or electronic music concerts took place here, as well as award ceremonies, and now design or arts fairs, parties and various launches are to happen. Plus the project supported by the EEA Grants funding.
But what does the Carol Halls projects aims to be? Our project means a step by step transformation in spaces for creative industries and events, one that would preserve the identity of industrial architecture and the whole historical patina of the place. The project is a cultural initiative and gave a new name to the place, without claiming itself from the previous ones, still being aware and cherishing the place’s history.
What we proposed is to open a meaningful place for the South-Western area of the city (perhaps not the busiest one in activities and options for free time), to build a platform which would bring diversity of programmes and a lively, active cultural content in Carol Park, both to the residents in the area, but also to many of the active groups in the city. A place we want communities be rendered to the place, and a place rendered to these communities.
The former hill with grapevines turned over 100 years ago in the most avant-garde urban place, reflecting ambitions for technological progress and social change of the country. The park built as an international exhibition, the museum of technics, the first railway station in Bucharest, the astronomic observatory and many other places in the area used to make this site be a meeting place, fun and urban dynamics.>
CONNECTED. Things about future, cities and people
From the project website: < The project investigates the future impact of the new technologies upon the European urbanities. Developing concepts like smart city or smart community, the research seeks to reveal the future social and cultural mutations that tend to better valorize individuals and communities together with their human, creative and entrepreneurial potential. As proposed through narrative and dramatized visions, the European space appears like a dense interconnected territory defined by complex rules and sophisticated standards of human interaction. While the linguistic barriers are probable to be spectacularly overcome through technology and the spaciousness to be diversely perceived due to highly increased future mobility, how this immense space is going to look like and how could Europe be redefined from the cultural and urban points of view? Given this framework, how are we going to use the cultural richness and diversity of Europe, when the globalizing technologies bring progressively more alienations as well as comportments’ and practices’ levelling?
The project includes an exhibition opened simultaneously in Bergen, Amsterdam, Bucharest and Stockholm in the autumn of 2014. The 4 parallel events will be interconnected through video transmissions. The members of the trans-disciplinary groups involved in the project will keep lectures and debates (on City Thinking, Futurology, Art, Architecture, Technology) in those places as well as in other cities relevant for the NS axis of the project. A trans-disciplinary documentation on this subject will be produced and disseminated through a collection of articles published in magazines and on web platforms. A booklet distributed in partnerships with international transport lines will help collect additional ideas and opinions from the general public, which will be presented in the exhibition. A mobile app will stand for the exhibition guideline.>