BA (Hons) Architecture Stage 3 Coordinator, Dr Ambrose Gillick, recent presented a paper at the European Architectural History Network 20210 conference on the 5 June, hosted by Edinburgh University.
Dr Gillick’s paper, Common accents: Professional practices, indigenous voices and vernacular urbanity in Kutch, India, looked at reconstruction work undertaken by the development practice, Hunnarshala in Kutch, Gujarat, in the wake of the 2001 Bhuj Earthquake.
Dr Gillick says, “The paper illustrates how their professional knowledge was instrumentalised to support indigenous and local knowledges towards improved urban citizenship. The paper argued that the work of Hunnarshala made normative, organic processes of settlement construction more likely to occur in the face of homogenising agendas of state and third sector donor organisations. Through their work, Hunnarshala sought to mediate processes of top-down urban development and reconstruction which operated to impose a narrow democratisation agenda which failed to enable ordinary voices. Instead, Hunnarshala’s practice promoted indigenous values, realised in the form of a coproduced synthetic vernacular architecture.”