Festival of the Future City

19-21 Oct. A conference of firsts for Bath.
3 days of talks, walks and workshops across the city-centre looking at urban development in the 21st century. With a focus on the complexities of a place like Bath, a city similar to Venice with UNESCO World Heritage City Status, how should cities reinvigorate their character and economy when looking to the future?

Various venues across Bath. Bath Preservation Trust and the Museum of Bath Architecture are festival partners.

Thanks to the master planning of John Wood the Elder and his son the Younger in the 18th/19th centuries, Bath was one of the UK’s first future cities. But could it really make that claim today? Is there a city in the UK, or in the world that can?

In sync with the Festival of Future City in Bristol, the Bath programme explores three principal themes:
Housing
The Artist and the City
Great Architecture

Speakers include renowned socialist film director Ken Loach, architect Alison Brooks, chief curator at the Design Museum Justin McGuirk and author Anna Minton.

Ken Loach comments: “Like football, Bath is a city of two halves. Can we create an integrated community in this very special place? There’s a mood in the air for change. How can that be reflected here?”

The Utopian City
Thursday 19th October, 3pm-9pm, Various locations
Events suggesting how utopian thinking could develop our cities, and what utopian aspects are already in place. Includes ‘Walking Utopia’: a walk around Bath with BPT Curator Dr Amy Frost and writer/ architecture critic Owen Hatherley and an evening of PechaKucha presentations on ‘Liveable Cities’.

Whose City Is It?
Friday 20th October, 1pm-6.30pm, Assembly Rooms Bath
Taking in the complexities of a place like Bath we look at the local question of future city. What are the best ways to develop an ecosystem for all to contribute economically, and benefit by return? Is public space an answer?  Explore the challenges of preserving architectural heritage whilst creating new buildings and welcoming new  populations with leading architect Alison Brooks’ (Bath Western Riverside housing scheme), Henrietta Billings, Director of SAVE Britain’s Heritage, Andrew Vines of Historic England, Jim Heverin, Director at Zaha Hadid  Architects and more.

The Creative City
Saturday 21st October, 12.30pm-5.30pm, The Edge
What makes a city a great place to live? Explore global radical housing solutions, the city as artistic inspiration and 21st Century design. Speakers during the day include Stuart Woods (Thomas Heatherwick Studio, Garden Bridge project) Anna Minton (Big Capital), Alex Vasudevan (The Autonomous City), The Design Museum’s Justin McGuirk and artist Rut Blees Luxemburg a photographer and installation artist focusing on urban space.
Talks will include:

* Ken Loach Friday 20th October, 7.30pm-8.30pm, Bath Assembly Rooms
Ken Loach presents his vision for the city of Bath, his home for many years.
* Jim Heverin (Zaha Hadid Architects), Andrew Vines, Roz Barr and Guests: Imagining the Future
Friday 20th October, 5pm-6.30pm, Bath Assembly Rooms
Looking at how new buildings can transform historical environments in the city.
* Justin McGuirk, Anna Minton, Alex Vasudevan: Housing in the Future City
Saturday 21st October, 12.30pm-1.45pm, The Edge
Debating how good quality homes are vital for a successful future city.
* Alison Brooks, Henrietta Billings, Tanvir Hasan: Preserving Utopia
Friday 20th October, 1pm-2.30pm, Bath Assembly Rooms
Leading architects and thinkers ponder Bath as a 21st century city.
* What makes great architecture?
Saturday 21st October, 4-5.30pm, The Edge
Tackling the question, what are the essential ingredients that make great architecture?
* Rut Blees Luxemburg, Melanie Manchot: The Artist and the City
Saturday 21st October, 2.30pm-3.45pm, The Edge
Looking at how architecture and urban space inspire the work of contemporary artists.

With thanks to Bath & North East Somerset Council, RIBA Architecture, Lovell Stone Group, Arts
Council England and Heritage Lottery Fund.

Festival of the Future City Bath is part of Festival of the Future City 2017, in association with Bristol Festival of Ideas

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