23.11.11

sullivans cove urban geographies [final project].

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I have been putting off posting anything to do with my final year work - mainly because I struggle to explain my project and thesis properly without strapping someone to the desk and giving a hugely over-detailed explanation of everything [apologies Mum].

The images are mostly out of my folio, and admittedly the technical drawings are rather illegible as they are tiny compared to their proper scale [hence adding my stair detail at a bigger scale].
Results come out on Friday at 9am. I have forewarned the office that if they come to work and find me rocking in the corner with fear and trepidation etc to not stress it's just my annual uni result release over-dramatic tendencies.

The following is a piece of text that is an extract from my work which I used to explain my recently finished folio + CV, and should realistically be titled 'How-to-explain-two-bazillion-hours-of-work-in-428-words[or less]'
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Sullivans Cove Urban Geographies
Sullivans Cove Urban Geographies began with an investigation into the hidden historical traces of Hobart's Sullivans Cove, and how they shape the personal understanding of place.

The change in both geographical and cartographical methodology over the past thirty years highlights the importance of cultural narratives as a significant part of the history of the urban landscape. There is no such thing in being able to define what place is: place is the crossover between histories, memories, certain cartographic re-presentations, and the actual fact of negotiating past and present presences on site. Places are never empty, but layered with meaning and open to interpretation. In the case of Hobart's Sullivans Cove, this cartographic language holds the non-dominant historical narrative of place - the practices of the everyday, both past and present. As a result, the multifarious nature of the making and meaning of Sullivans Cove ultimately is a direct affect of the habitation of people, their separate personal geographies contributing to the Cove's underlying historical narrative. In the case of Sullivans Cove, a 'Landscape vocabulary' has become invisibly embedded within various cartographic and archival representations of place. This vocabulary is a highly esoteric narrative, intricately intertwined with both past and present everyday practices.

Investigating the history of a place enables an enrichment of the understanding of place, and a greater understanding of the implications and connections between the tangible and the non-tangible elements of that particular place. In questioning how this understanding of a place's meaning is created, it became evident that the answer is the everyday practices - the human habitation and participation. It is clear that much of a site's essential qualities and embedded narrative is non-physical; lying dormant ready to be found or otherwise architecturally engaged with. The veiled 'landscape vocabulary' of Sullivans Cove depicted through the hidden narrative [the everyday practices of the Cove] of both the historical and archival texts and cartographic representation was a culmination of the diverse personal geographies held within the place. In finding the 'landscape vocabulary' a reference is provided with the potential to further architecturally engage with. As a result, this in turn broadens the construction of the historical narrative of place. Not only does respecting the found vocabulary of a place denote the meaningful habitation and past and present activities of the everyday, but also enforces the notion of the urban landscape as a cultural library for social memories and historial narratives - rendering the potential of archtitecture to act as a storehouse for the thousands of personal geographies of the past inhabitants of this special place. 

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