Thursday, November 1, 2012

NOMAD SEMINAR, 2012, Middle East Technical University-Ankara
Organizers: Elvan Altan Ergut, Belgin Turan Özkaya
Seminar Coordinator: Carmen Popescu

November 8, Thursday

9:30-10:00           Welcome

10:00-11:30           Session I: Imagining Places               
Chair: Elvan Altan Ergut
Nikos Tsivikis (Center for Messenian Archaeological Studies, Athens)
What is Byzantine? Travelers in Early 19th Century Morea (Peloponnese) and the Construction of Byzantine Architecture
Elvan Cobb (Cornell University)
The Role of Travel in the Establishment of the Architectural Photography Collection at Cornell University
Anna Brzyski (University of Kentucky)
From the Colonial Era to the Cold War: Henry Sienkiewicz’s Travels through Real, Imagined and Ideological Africa

11:30-13:30            Break

13:30-15:00           Session II: ‘Grand Tourists’                           
Chair: Ali Uzay Peker
Emilio Mazza (IULM, Milan) & Edoardo Piccoli (Politecnico di Torino)
True and False Philosophers in Tour:
Lord Charlemont's Topography of Manners
Tuğba Tanyeri Erdemir (Middle East Technical University)
Archaeological Travels in the Ottoman Near East
Sibel Acar (Middle East Technical University)
Intersecting Routes of Architectural Photography, Travel, and Survey Books in Nineteenth Century

15:00-15:30           Break

15:30-17:30            METU talks Architectural History 35: Book Launch
Can Bilsel (University of San Diego)
Antiquity on Display:  Regimes of the Authentic
in Berlin's Pergamon Museum (Oxford University Press, 2012)
      Introduction by Belgin Turan Özkaya

November 9, Friday

10:00-11:30           Roundtable: Travels to Ottoman Lands
Nilay Özlü (Bosphorus University)
One Palace, Multiple Narratives:
Travel Accounts on the Topkapı Palace from 18th to 20th Century
Betül Atasoy (İstanbul Technical University)
The Impressions on Late Ottoman Architecture ‘within the framework of Istanbul’ through 19th Century American Travel Narratives
Stefan Peychev (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
Lost Architecture:
Travel Literature and the Study of Bulgaria’s Ottoman Heritage
Discussion by Ahmet Ersoy

11:30-13:30            Break

13:30-15:00           Session III: Visiting Cities                                  
Chair: Namık Erkal
Sean Anderson (University of Sydney)
 Real Copies: Writing a Modern Colonial Asmara
Elisa Poli & Giovani Avosani (University of Ferrara)
Giorgio Bassani, the Garden of the Finzi-Continis
Aslıhan Şenel (Istanbul Technical University)
Away at Home: Making and Breaking the Identity of the Home City through Contemporary Guidebooks

15:00-15:30           Break

15:30-17:00           Session IV: Touring Architects                   
Chair: Ali Cengizkan
M. Kemal Baran (Koç University)
Different Modes of Recording in Karl Friedrich Schinkel’s Architectural Journey to Italy
Daniela Ortiz dos Santos (Swiss Federal Institute of technology)
Le Corbusier's Trip to Brazil
Denise Costanzo (Pennsylvania State University)
Revisiting the Caput Mundi: Venturi’s Letters from Rome

17:00-17:30           Concluding Remarks                                
Moderator: Carmen Popescu

 supported by METU Faculty of Architecture and Department of Architecture

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Narratives of Travel Writing and Architectural History

The 3rd session of the Nomad seminar will be held on November 9 2012, in Ankara at the Middle East Technical University.

Since the Renaissance, the early modern and modern eras have been increasingly marked by ‘movement.’ People, objects and ideas travelled across geographies within the quite disparate conditions of pilgrimage, migration, colonization, trade, archaeology or tourism to name a few.  Arguably beginning with the Grand Tour and reaching its climax in the nineteenth and twentieth century, journeys abroad became a pervasive and fashionable practice. The English historian Eric Hobsbawm tells the story of how his father, a young man from England with Polish origin who held a post in a shipping office in Egypt - the then British colony - met his mother, a young lady from Austria-Hungary who was visiting Alexandria with her uncle who had business relations there, stating that “the economics and politics of the [era] …, not to mention its social history, brought them together.” In such a context, the movement of not only  explorers, adventurers, archaeologists, architects, diplomats, and traders but also ethnographic and natural specimens, antique remains, or local products and curiosities, has led to the circulation of accompanying concepts, notions, discourses and narratives between different cultures of the ‘east’ and the ‘west.’

In most cases, textual and visual documentation guided these travels, or were prepared by travelers as products of their journeys. In this seminar, our interest is in tackling all types of travel writing in the modern era from travelogues that are often subjective records of daily experiences, to guides or popular press reports that produce seemingly objective descriptions of distant geographies. The analysis of these published or unpublished travel accounts requires a critical understanding of how they mobilized the prevalent discourses and mythologies of their own context, or provided new definitions in naming and classifying sites, buildings, and artifacts previously unknown to them. These practices of definition and taxonomy, as is well known, are also common to some other disciplines that categorize and order the past, most importantly for our purposes to architectural history. Focusing on accounts of such trans-cultural travel with either religious, political, economic, educational or leisurely motivations, our aim is to assess the interaction between, and the mutual impact of similar or disparate narratives of travel writing and architectural history writing.