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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Guggenheim Lab - do 100 words make cities?

By Jigna Padhiar
Photography: Courtesy the BMW Guggenheim Lab

The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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Two years, three cities, 100 words. The BMW Guggenheim Lab in its round up of two years, highlights 100 ideas/terms that cities are grappling with...

After BMW Group slashed funding, the city-hopping BMW Guggenhiem Lab has come full circle. Having travelled to New York, Berlin and Mumbai in two years, the Lab has culminated in an exhibition titled Participatory City: 100 Urban Trends from the BMW Guggenheim Lab, on view at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, till January 5, 2014.

The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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From 2011 to 2013, the Lab - part urban think-tank, part community centre and public gathering space – conducted lectures, discussion forums, screenings among other discursive programs, with the aim to explore new ideas that address the problems that people in the three cities spoke about and how infrastructure affects them.

The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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The Lab has collected and distilled ideas of what people in the cities talked about in the form of 100 urban trends terms, out of a glossary of 300, that are projected in the gallery. Visually, a tad bit drab, the exhibition aims to show, “the actions that people can take – metaphoric and small – for wellbeing in cities.”

The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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Accompanying the projections are drawings, photographs, videos, definitions of the terms, descriptions of each city and installations that cull an image of the overall themes in each city.

The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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The exhibition curated by Maria Nicanor, Curator, BMW Guggenheim Lab, and Associate Curator, Architecture and Urbanism, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, “aims to give the audience the idea of ownership of their own city to improve their wellbeing.”
 
The BMW Guggenheim Lab
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Meanwhile, as these findings have set base, the Guggenheim plans for more experimental programs in urbanism and architecture through more detailed programming, this being the museum’s first foray into architecture.

On the other hand, aren’t some of these new-formed terms on the precipice of being passively received and further complicating understanding? 
Read the glossary of terms here: http://www.bmwguggenheimlab.org/100urbantrends/?v=2#!/new-york-city

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