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Bilder av småstaden - om estetisk värdering av en stadstyp; Images of the Small Town - on Aesthetic Evaluation of a Townscape

Sternudd, Catharina LU (2007)
Abstract
The thesis takes its starting-point in the last years' growing interests in the small town as an architectural concept. Pre-industrial small towns are used as visual and structural models for very attractive new settlements in Sweden. However, architects and other actors within the cultural sphere question the adequacy of using old models for new buildings. The thesis' overarching question is: What is it that makes the small town-like habitation much appreciated by lay people, and so controversial among architects?



A poll study in the small town of Karlshamn shows that the inhabitants make very unanimous aesthetic valuations of the buildings and that the wooden buildings, the small scale and the square are the most... (More)
The thesis takes its starting-point in the last years' growing interests in the small town as an architectural concept. Pre-industrial small towns are used as visual and structural models for very attractive new settlements in Sweden. However, architects and other actors within the cultural sphere question the adequacy of using old models for new buildings. The thesis' overarching question is: What is it that makes the small town-like habitation much appreciated by lay people, and so controversial among architects?



A poll study in the small town of Karlshamn shows that the inhabitants make very unanimous aesthetic valuations of the buildings and that the wooden buildings, the small scale and the square are the most appreciated features. Studies in the field of environmental psychology find a general aesthetic preference for features that can be related to the traditional small town, such as coherence and complexity by maintaining the same scale on buildings and by following a street line, while at the same time being varied in colour, form and expression; a variety of openness and enclosure; legible structure which facilitates orientation, richness in greenery and historic significance.



Architects' aesthetic evaluation patterns reflect a modernistic discourse which implies that the use of historical references is strongly put into question. The wish to live in the new small town settlements is dismissed by many architects as conservative and nostalgic. Other professionals find qualities in the small town settlement which are lacking in the ordinary production of new houses. Some hope that the very essence of people's dreams can be turned into modern architecture and still attain the same appreciation. To the architect role is attached the task of interpreting our own time or developing a new, creative and visionary architectural style. The predominant building style in the architectural canon is - with few exceptions - modern. Non-modern architecture is thereby being excepted from the models of today's construction.



Genuine small-town settlements are very sought-after on today's real estate market but constitutes a very small part of Sweden's housing areas. The findings of the thesis suggest that a contribution to existing urban structures in the form of small town settlements would be welcomed by many people. (Less)
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author
opponent
  • Arkitekt SAR/MSA, adjungerad professor i arkitektur och gestaltning Hellquist, Thomas, Programmet för fysisk planering, Blekinge Tekniska Högskola
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Environmental health, Karlshamn, urban kvalitet, stadsmiljö, småstadsbebyggelse, estetisk värdering, småstad, stadsplanering, arkitektur, urban aesthetics, townscape, aesthetic evaluation, small town, Architecture, urban design, Miljömedicin, interior design, Arkitektur, inredningsarkitektur
pages
210 pages
publisher
Department of Architecture and Built Environment, Lund University
defense location
Sal A:C, A-huset, Sölvegatan 24, Lunds Tekniska Högskola
defense date
2007-05-25 13:15
ISBN
978-91-7740-086-8
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
b24c7cb2-8a74-4c02-9fd7-5c130e6f274d (old id 27110)
date added to LUP
2007-06-05 13:49:01
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:05
@phdthesis{b24c7cb2-8a74-4c02-9fd7-5c130e6f274d,
  abstract     = {The thesis takes its starting-point in the last years' growing interests in the small town as an architectural concept. Pre-industrial small towns are used as visual and structural models for very attractive new settlements in Sweden. However, architects and other actors within the cultural sphere question the adequacy of using old models for new buildings. The thesis' overarching question is: What is it that makes the small town-like habitation much appreciated by lay people, and so controversial among architects?<br/><br>
<br/><br>
A poll study in the small town of Karlshamn shows that the inhabitants make very unanimous aesthetic valuations of the buildings and that the wooden buildings, the small scale and the square are the most appreciated features. Studies in the field of environmental psychology find a general aesthetic preference for features that can be related to the traditional small town, such as coherence and complexity by maintaining the same scale on buildings and by following a street line, while at the same time being varied in colour, form and expression; a variety of openness and enclosure; legible structure which facilitates orientation, richness in greenery and historic significance.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Architects' aesthetic evaluation patterns reflect a modernistic discourse which implies that the use of historical references is strongly put into question. The wish to live in the new small town settlements is dismissed by many architects as conservative and nostalgic. Other professionals find qualities in the small town settlement which are lacking in the ordinary production of new houses. Some hope that the very essence of people's dreams can be turned into modern architecture and still attain the same appreciation. To the architect role is attached the task of interpreting our own time or developing a new, creative and visionary architectural style. The predominant building style in the architectural canon is - with few exceptions - modern. Non-modern architecture is thereby being excepted from the models of today's construction.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Genuine small-town settlements are very sought-after on today's real estate market but constitutes a very small part of Sweden's housing areas. The findings of the thesis suggest that a contribution to existing urban structures in the form of small town settlements would be welcomed by many people.},
  author       = {Sternudd, Catharina},
  isbn         = {978-91-7740-086-8},
  keyword      = {Environmental health,Karlshamn,urban kvalitet,stadsmiljö,småstadsbebyggelse,estetisk värdering,småstad,stadsplanering,arkitektur,urban aesthetics,townscape,aesthetic evaluation,small town,Architecture,urban design,Miljömedicin,interior design,Arkitektur,inredningsarkitektur},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {210},
  publisher    = {Department of Architecture and Built Environment, Lund University},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {Bilder av småstaden - om estetisk värdering av en stadstyp; Images of the Small Town - on Aesthetic Evaluation of a Townscape},
  year         = {2007},
}