Mimi Zeiger

Critic, editor, curator and instigator.

When Barry Bergdoll, MoMA’s outgoing Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design, took the podium at an October workshop for Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities, he warmly welcomed the participants, who had gathered at the Museum from around the globe. On hand to embark on a yearlong study exploring potential architectures of global urbanism were architects and researchers from Boston and Brazil, New York and Nigeria, as well as from Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, India, France, Turkey, and Hong Kong, all of whom had been selected by architecture curator Pedro Gadanho. Read More …

Advisory Board Member and Respondent

In 2030, the world’s population will be a staggering eight billion people. Of these, two-thirds will live in cities. Most will be poor. With limited resources, this uneven growth will be one of the greatest challenges faced by societies across the globe. Over the next years, city authorities, urban planners and designers, economists, and many others will have to join forces to avoid major social and economical catastrophes, working together to ensure these expanding megacities will remain habitable.

To engage this international debate, Uneven Growth brings together six interdisciplinary teams of researchers and practitioners to examine new architectural possibilities for six global metropolises: Hong Kong, Istanbul, Lagos, Mumbai, New York, and Rio de Janeiro. Following on the same model of the MoMA exhibitions Rising Currents and Foreclosed, each team will develop proposals for a specific city in a series of workshops that occur over the course of a 14-month initiative.

Uneven Growth seeks to challenge current assumptions about the relationships between formal and informal, bottom-up and top-down urban development, and to address potential changes in the roles architects and urban designers might assume vis-à-vis the increasing inequality of current urban development. The resulting proposals, which will be presented at MoMA in November 2014, will consider how emergent forms of tactical urbanism can respond to alterations in the nature of public space, housing, mobility, spatial justice, environmental conditions, and other major issues in near-future urban contexts.

Urban Case Study Teams:
New York: Situ Studio, New York, and Cohabitation Strategies (CohStra), Rotterdam
Rio de Janeiro: RUA Arquitetos, Rio de Janeiro, and MAS Urban Design ETH, Zurich
Mumbai: URBZ, Mumbai, and Pop Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge
Lagos: NLÉ Architects, Lagos, and Inteligencias Colectivas, Madrid
Hong Kong: MAP Office, Hong Kong, and Network Architecture Lab, Columbia University, New York
Istanbul: Superpool, Istanbul, and Atelier d’Architecture Autogérée, Paris

Rising Currents: Projects for New York’s Waterfront, the latest exhibition to open in the architecture and design gallery of the Museum of Modern Art, begins with a grim premise: that global climate change is making sea levels rise and powerful storm surges more frequent. Watch out, we’re gonna get wet. If we don’t take action, we’re in for catastrophe, with floods wiping out parts of Lower Manhattan, Brooklyn and northern New Jersey. To underscore the creek we are up, the exhibition designers have grafted water lines — two, four, six, eight, ten feet — on the dark gray gallery walls. Glub, glub. Read More …