“The ideal city in the city”. This was the claim of the Zunino Real Estate, selling a dream: a passage to a modern life at the outskirts of Milan on a great promenade boulevard. A new cityscape of well-tended green areas and walking avenues, where residents could relax in cafés and mothers with their kids are all around.
However, Santa Giulia-Montecity, rather than a model of ideal city, has remained an ideal type, or rather virtual, because today the neighborhood sadly lives only in the project of its famous architect, Norman Foster. Like avatars, the renderings appear from the parallel world of internet to stress a paradoxical reality; virtually created images that become real objects themselves when they are photographed. Surreal representations that mingle with the images taken from the field and become both, imaginaries and imagined projection of the city, the same that appears in the suspended glances of those who “really” live in Milan Montecity. Far from being just a symbolic opposition, the enclosed social documentary represents an important part of this work, which is about another miserable real estate and financial scandal in the recent history of Milan.
Urban Renewal, Ethnographic Documentary, Milan
Published in i Quaderni-Urbanistica Tre, Journal of Urban Design and Planning of Università degli Studi Roma Tre, issue on Urban Representations, Year I, 3, September-December 2013, pp. 65-74. ISSN: 1973-9702