'The play's the thing' : on theatricality and modern public space

Stara, Alexandra (2023) 'The play's the thing' : on theatricality and modern public space. In: Landrum, Lisa and Ridgway, Sam, (eds.) Theatres of architectural imagination. Routledge. pp. 131-143. ISBN 9781032286112


This chapter explores the potential of a modern reading of architectural theatricality through the discussion of two public projects built in the mid-twentieth century, Dimitris Pikionis’ Acropolis Works in Athens (1954-57), and Hans Scharoun’s Neue Staatsbibliothek in Berlin (1964-1977). Through distinct means and characters, these two very different projects invest in a theatricality that operates as a latent mode of engagement, in order to makes spaces for structured and meaningful yet open participation. Key to the discussion is Hans-Georg Gadamer’s notion of ‘play’, as a hermeneutic device for grasping the intricate balance between openness and structure – or freedom and responsibility – in our late modern world.

Actions (Repository Editors)

Item Control Page Item Control Page