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Stanley Kubrick, [Commodities traders on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade], Look, 1949

The Jungle: Bertolt Brecht’s Chicago and the Architecture of Production
Francesco Marullo
Apr 11, 2017 (6pm)

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Despite having never visited the city, Chicago was an obsession for Bertolt Brecht (1898–1956). He viewed Chicago as a metropolis built on sheer rationality and steel-frames, grain-silos and financial speculation, infrastructure and industrial monopolies, nomad workers and labor struggles—the material expression of the most advanced forces of capitalism. Brecht allegorically adopted such a jungle of asphalt, railways, skyscrapers, primitive drives, and frantic activities to stage most of his early plays. By dissecting reality “like the mechanism of a car,” Brecht’s theatre rejected any emphatic representation of the world, aiming instead to unravel the conditions which produce the world. This talk reads the architecture of production in Chicago through the eyes of Bertolt Brecht, adopting the principles of estrangement, dialectical theatre, and montage as design tools for conjecturing a series of projects for The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui.  

Francesco Marullo holds a MS and PhD in History and Theory of Architecture from Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) and The Berlage Center for Advanced Studies in Architecture and Urban Design in Rotterdam. He is a founding member of the research collective The City as a Project (2010), and his work focuses on the relation between architecture, logistics, and production. Marullo is the 2016–17 Douglas A. Garofalo Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor at the UIC School of Architecture. Previously, he taught at The Berlage, TU Delft, the Rotterdam Academy of Architecture, the RomaTre University, and also collaborated with the Office for Metropolitan Architecture, Matteo Mannini Architects, and DOGMA. In 2012 he cofounded Behemoth Press—a think-tank platform devoted to the exploration of the architectural project in the form of essays, drawings, exhibitions, symposia, and publications. 

About the Douglas A. Garofalo Fellowship
Named in honor of architect and educator Doug Garofalo (1958–2011), this nine-month teaching fellowship—supported with a grant from the Graham Foundation—provides emerging designers the opportunity to teach studio and seminar courses in the undergraduate and graduate programs and conduct independent design research. The fellowship also includes a public lecture at the Graham Foundation and an exhibition at the UIC School of Architecture. To learn more about the fellowship, click here.