New CAAD book: A Quantum City, Mastering the Generic

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The long awaited CAAD book A Quantum City is finally out, a celebration on cities, technology and intellect. It can be purchased here.

 

We are all nomads
native to the universe.

This is a stage play,
a narrative about us on the planet.
About how we relate to each other
and to the Great Masters among us.
Welcome to The City.

The views are wide open and bright.
Cities are powerful and challenging.
The heights are lofty the abysses are deep.
Take a seat!

Here’s the setting: A planet.
The generic city.
And 100% urbanism.
Raise the curtain!

Everything is connected.
Everything imparts everything.
The self and the other.
Good and evil.
Adland perfection to bad news provocation.
The burning pain of aching souls versus the purity of nature.
Catastrophe and salvation circling each other forever in their merry-go-round.
A Venetian Carnival: Masks, murder, love, perfidy and beauty.

What should I do,
if I am capable of anything
but have no idea what to do?

 

We know the specific strengths of various cities, are aware of their ranking, are able to discuss their density and growth. But what do all cities have in common, what do we know about the ”lowest common denominator“? The ”city as a species“, the ”primal genetic material of the city“: this is the subject of A Quantum City. This colossal work is a love letter to the city and intellectual culture.

A Quantum City invites you to tap into the wealth of indexes belonging to our world. You get introduced to Orlando, a person with no noteworthy qualities, nor any particular properties: a human being who has not yet travelled. And it’s because of this that Orlando is singled out by the gods. He sets sail from Crete towards Athens in 320 BCE, hoping to find evidence of perfection. Throughout the book you follow him on his Odyssey through Western civilisation; though Orlando never quite ends up where she intended to go. And yet, by the time she arrives in the New York of the 1960s, all the decisions that have been made must be called hers. Orlando’s adventure is to challenge the collective origin of intellectual nature. In doing so, Orlando becomes neither an authoritarian functionary, nor a restless activist, nor a comfortable member of a bourgeoisie, but a citizen of the digital age, a Quantum Citizen.

This is not a book as you might expect. It doesn’t offer a theory about cities; rather it speaks of any theory. It is not engaged in solving problems, but it is outraged at the kind of stupidity that cultivates ignorance, at the oppressive and anonymous demand that any solid formulation of a problem should be simple. And above all it takes you onto a journey to (re-)discover The City…

The book is divided into four interrelated chapters and can be read page by page in a discursive manner, however randomly browsing through the book also offers new and multi-faceted interpretations. Great intellectual achievements are compared with obscure and mundane events. A Quantum City offers an inspiring view of the city that is in us and around us.

 

A Quantum City, Mastering the Generic
Ludger Hovestadt, Vera Bühlmann (Eds.)
with Diana Alvarez-Marin, Miro Roman, Sebastian Michael
824 pages, 6.6 x 2.3 x 9.6 inches, 1.7 pounds
Hardcover
English
ISBN-13: 978-3035606263
Publication Date: 12.06.2015

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