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Mind the gap! Postcolonial architecure in Southeast Asia

Studio Bagan, DAAD Summer School 2021, Brandenburg University of Technology
29 November 2021

Due to the rapid urbanisation in many cities in Southeast Asia, the „Architectures of Independence“, which for the first time after many years of colonial subjugation gave the young countries the opportunity to formulate an independent position in the field of architecture and urbanism, are threatened with demolition or have already disappeared. There are certainly a variety of reasons for this, and some of them lie in the lack of recognition of postcolonial modernism as architectural heritage.

This lecture discussed which architectures, which buildings, we actually perceive as part of our architectural heritage and combined this with an insight into a project Encounters with Southeast Asian Modernism. Using some examples from the region, but in particular from Yangon, it illustrated how the lack of knowledge of Southeast Asian modernism manifests itself in architectural historiography.

Top: Thakin Kodaw Maing Mausoleum, 1966, Yangon, Myanmar. Image: Moritz Henning, 2018