Rural – Urban: A Tale of Two Cities

The south entrance to the ruins of Pruitt Igoe; Strange Harvest

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architects and art critics still debate the phrase,

 a Pruitt Igoe Now s

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Architect, designer and writer Sam Jacob recently conducted a semester-long studio on the subject of Pruitt Igoe “as a site of architectural rhetoric and as a place of real facts on the ground.” Here he writes in his blog Strange Harvest about the landscape of the site:
The site now though is a stunning and tragic place – the result of Pruitt Igoe’s traumatic history of hopes and failure: of slum clearance, architectural vision, political and social collapse, economic abandonment that all adds up to what appears to be a natural environment. Except this is a forest that grows out of all that socio-political debris.
The forest has an archeological atmosphere – as though one were discovering an ancient civilisation amongst the undergrowth. Roads are still there but gradually encroached upon by the forest. A lamppost stands amongst the trees. Depressions in the ground are not natural topology but formed by the sites of imploded buildings.