Chloé Macary-Carney cm-c
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Spotlight is a collaborative project co-designed with Clothilde Josserand, Alexander Mehren and Perrine Cr and co-built with an international team of student participants in the summer of 2018 in Rijeka, Croatia, as part of the European Architecture Students Assembly, Re:Easa. During two weeks, we worked with a group of about 20 student architects and together discovered the Hartera Paper factory, located in the canyon of the Rjecina river of Rijeka. We wanted participants to question how we produce or work on already existing spaces. Do they need to be 'reactivated’ ? We wanted to shine a light on the buildings that have seemingly become 'unimportant' spaces because they are signs of an industrial past that is now over and has left these buildings empty, deserted. Together we discovered Hartera and collected graphical elements and shapes that we found to be prominent in the area. We spoke with locals who told us the history of Hartera. The paper factory went bankrupt in 2005. Once the biggest manufacturer of cigarette paper in Europe, Hartera is now but a relic of the industrial golden age of Rijeka, slowly but surely being taken over by the forests that cover the canyon slopes. The Rjecina river was used to give power to the factory with the use of a dam that was built a few kilometers above. Hartera is hidden behind the hill of the castle, but lined to the city and the port by the river. We came wanting to reveal the value of an unused space, but discovered that the presence of this empty space already is invaluable to the city today. Artists, skateboarders, children, families and dogs come here to play. The Hartera paper factory is today already a thriving source of inspiration and a harbor of creativity. This empty space that may be considered run down and undervalued is actually thriving with creativity, inspiring people from all over the world to create and celebrate as it has already been used as the location for architecture competitions and for music festivals. Our intervention wishes to celebrate this in a sense and spotlight how valuable this kind of seemingly run down space is for a city and more specifically for the city of Rijeka which has many more abandoned industrial relics. Today in Hartera, you can find the culmination of our two weeks of work; the line, the arch and the squares. The designs were made to highlight specific elements of the space of the projection by focusing on a specific element of the landscape, or contrasting with the very composition of the space to invite people look, or to play with the architecture itself.
 In 2020, Rijeka will be Europe's Capital of Culture, meaning new developments and new energy for the post -industrial city. This EASA was an opportunity for us to question the current state of architecture in Rijeka, and the values attributed to the architectures of the city. With the same provocative spirit of the Re:EASA concept, we wanted to produce spatial ambiguities, and a feeling of strangeness that unsettles normal rules. The concept of the workshop was to use anamorphosis to put a spotlight on disused places so as to make people look at them, question them and to change their way of seeing them in order to give new value to these spaces. An anamorphosis is an optical artifice that relies on perspective, where the mind and the eye create a reevaluation that shows the resurrection of a form. This was our provocative medium through which we hoped to achieve this goal. They force the viewer to question the space and their perception of it.
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