After Effects

Architectural Histories of the Present
Nov 9-11 2018 | UC Berkeley

Friday, November 9

Opening Lecture, 6pm, Wurster Hall Room 270
Rajagopalan Mrinalini, University of Pittsburgh

Saturday, November 10

Wurster Hall Room 104

Panel 1: 10am

Valentina Rozas-Krause (UC Berkeley)
Competing Apologies: African Memories in Postcolonial Berlin

Diego Javier Caro Serrano (U Hong Kong)
Arturo Soria’s Ciudad Lineal of Madrid: a streetscape result of socio-political negotiations, 1880s-2010s

Tania Osorio Harp (UC Berkeley)
Is Forensic Architecture the New Muralism of the Mexican State?

Amit Ittyerah (UMichigan)
Parallel highways, the virtual and real: Algorithmic montage in the post periphery

Panel 2: 2pm

Secil Binboga (UMichigan)
Territory, Nature, and Infrastructure: The Politics of Scale-Making in Cold War Turkey

Will Davis (UCLA)
Invisible Measure

Katarzyna Balug (Harvard GSD)
Atmospheres of the Imagination, or the Moving of the Earth

5pm, Closing Lecture
Lucia Allais,
Princeton University

Keynote Speakers

Mrinalini Rajagopalan (University of Pittsburgh) is a historian of India’s built environment and is particularly interested in the impact of colonialism and nationalism on the architectural, urban, and preservation cultures of modern South Asia. Her first monograph Building Histories: The Archival and Affective Lives of Five Monuments in Modern Delhi (University of Chicago Press, 2016) traces the modern lives of five medieval monuments in India’s capital city, Delhi, and brings attention to their contested histories, unexpected uses, and ideological appropriations by state and non-state actors. This book received the Alice Davis Hitchcock Award from the Society of Architectural Historians in 2018.

Lucia Allais (Princeton School of Achitecture) is an architectural historian and design critic who works on the intersection of culture, politics, and technology in the modern period, with a special focus on international institutions and global practices in the 20th century. Her first book Designs of Destruction: The making of international monuments in the 20th Century, was published by the University of Chicago Press in October 2018. This work uncovers five extraordinary projects by scholars, architects, preservationists, lawyers, and other internationalists mobilized to salvage and protect monuments of art and architecture from various destructive scenarios in the middle of the 20th Century—from the League of Nations in the 1930s, to the Allied Air Forces in World War II, the International Campaign for Nubia in the 1970s. Conceived as a prehistory of UNESCO’s 1972 World Heritage Convention, it uncovers the tacit modernism that undelay the internationalization of preservation, and shows how architecture old and new became a privileged site of cultural cooperation on the world stage.


The Department of Architecture at UC Berkeley and its PhD students will host a graduate student conference entitled: After Effects: Architectural Histories of the Present, November 9th-11th 2018.

Scholars have, in recent years, argued that technical networks and infrastructure operate beyond human intention. Their insights into the failed projects of modernity offer new ways of understanding built environments as mediated at the unruly intersection of culture, technique, politics and non-human agency. Their methods can also be applied beyond the realm of science and technology studies, to understand design, as both a cultural and political-economic project, as discontinuous and subject to unanticipated effects.

This conference will focus on the after effects of under examined or minor landscapes, projects and historical developments that are informed by the politics of the present. This theme seeks participants examining a variety of questions through their dissertation research, including but not exclusive to:

• How are traces of the past and visions for the future being grappled with in the architecture and urbanism of the present?
• How are conflicting ideas of identity and power enacted through built space? How can scholars complicate the legacies of colonial and modernist projects to new ends?
• What can studies of architectural and urban planning projects contribute to emerging scholarly debates on the anthropocene?


After effects is supported by the Joan E. Draper Architectural History Research Endowment Fund and the Townsend Center for the Humanities at UC Berkeley.