Re-public: Towards a new spatial politics

by Elma van Boxel & Kristian Koreman [ZUS]

ISBN: 9789056626259

PUBLISHER: NAi Publishers

YEAR: 2007


With the book Re-public, the Rotterdam-based design bureau ZUS – the 2007 winner of the Rotterdam-Maaskant Award for Young Architects – issues a resounding statement about the future of contemporary urban space and the role that every designer working in town and city ought to assume.

ZUS (Zones Urbaines Sensibles) was founded by Elma van Boxel and Kristian Koreman in 2001. As landscape architects, Van Boxel and Koreman carry out research and design projects in the contemporary city. Their home base, the city of Rotterdam, forms an ideal terrain for observation and action.

An investigative approach that is explicitly boundary-breaking is a lynchpin in the work of ZUS. Their projects range from the micro level to the macro: from clothing and design via architecture and urban design to large-scale interventions in the landscape. ‘The scale is the medium,’ states ZUS, ‘while the sounding out and redefinition of boundaries is the challenge.’ The boundaries are those of the discipline itself as well as the physical and political boundaries of the urban landscape, in which themes such as multiculturalism, integration, public order and the public domain play a key role.