In December 2022, the universities of the Academic Consortium Katowice City of Science will be visited by Belinda Tato – architect and lecturer at Harvard University. The architect will give guest lectures and meet with the academic community and the inhabitants of the region. From 2 to 6 December, Belinda Tato will talk about her projects, as well as about the involvement of users in the process of changing public spaces. Before arriving in Katowice on 28 November, Belinda Tato will conduct an online lecture introducing the ecosistema urbano work methodology and presenting completed projects.
The architect defines her approach as urban social design, by which she understands the design of environments and spaces in order to improve the self-organisation of citizens, social interactions within the community and their relationship with the environment.
Belinda Tato is very involved in education, which is part of her activities. She teaches at various universities around the world (including Madrid, Harvard, Bergen, Alicante, IAAC, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Aarhus School of Architecture), both as part of regular semester courses and workshops. She is also an associate professor in the department of landscape architecture at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
During lectures and seminars conducted by Belinda Tato, we want to show how participation can become a way to confront our fears or support our intuition in a context where architecture, urban planning and other design-related fields are becoming more and more complex and multi-layered. Participation is not an end but a means: a powerful tool for creating new connections and stimulating both creativity and the production of new ideas. It also allows you to build a collective dialogue that will engage people in different ways, in different formats and at different times. Participation is a method to create more democratic, inclusive and open environments, redefining the very concept of citizenship. During the classes, we will try to answer the questions: how can designers re-imagine participatory decision-making processes?, how should participation in design develop in a constantly changing reality?, what improves communication and strengthens creative dialogue?, can participatory design lead to open processes or results?
Belinda Tato’s work methodology drives the complex and interconnected processes of the city into action. Starting from a meticulous analysis of the context, she tries to complement the strategic vision of the city’s development with a tactical, action-oriented approach and the production of tangible results and experiences related to transformation.
She has also carried out projects for the education industry many times, e.g. one of the recent major projects is a Campus in Málaga.
Schedule of meetings with Belinda Tato:
28 November, 6.00 p.m.–7.00 p.m.
online lecture – presentation of selected projects and methodology of work ecosistema urbano. Online broadcast at youtube.com/UniwersytetSlaski
2 December, 11.00 a.m.–12.30 p.m.
specialist seminar “Environmental awareness. City as an educational space” in the conference room at the Scientific Information Centre and Academic Library (ul. Bankowa 11, Katowice)
4 December, 1.40 p.m.–2.40 p.m.
specialist lecture “Designing atmospheres for social interaction” as part of the Silesian Science Festival KATOWICE, “Learn the city” stage, International Congress Centre in Katowice (Plac Sławika i Antala 1) [Sławik and Antal Squre 1]
4 December, 5.35 p.m.–6.05 p.m.
conversation with the audience as part of the Silesian Science Festival KATOWICE, multifunctional hall – Albert Einstein’s Science Station
During Belinda Tato’s visit to Katowice, there will also be lectures addressed to students and lecturers of the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice and the Silesian University of Technology, as well as a workshop aimed at developing a concept for changing the public space of the university campus.
5 December, 9.00 a.m.–10.30 a.m.
specialist lecture “Participation and new technologies. How to engage with the communities for the design of the future city” in the cinema room of the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice (ul. Raciborska 50)
5 December 12.45 p.m.–2.15 p.m.
specialist lecture “Tactical urbanism” at the Silesian University of Technology in Gliwice (lecture hall, building 10 of the Faculty of Architecture, ul. Strzody 10)
6 December, 9.00 a.m.–3.00 p.m.
individual consultations (closed workshops)
Meeting with the authorities and employees of the University of Silesia and representatives of the Academic Consortium “Katowice – City of Science”, involved in the development of the concept of changing the public space of the university campus. As a result of the consultations, recommendations will be developed regarding the directions of change in the Rawa valley and spatial connections of the network science centre.
The project “Let’s change Rawa” was co-financed by the Metropolis GZM under the Metropolitan Science Support Fund Programme in the years 2022-2024.
Belinda Tato’s visit is part of the activities undertaken as part of the European City of Science 2024.