Book presentation: Ana Šverko - Grad (ni)je kuća

photo Zoran Alajbeg


The book by Ana Šverko called Grad (ni)je kuća. O dijalogu između novog i starog Splita / urbanistička predigra will be presented on Thursday 19 January at 7 pm in Oris House of Architecture, Zagreb. The book will be discussed by Karin Šerman, Joško Belamarić, Marijan Hržić, Tomislav Premerl, Ivan Rogić, Mislav Kuzmanić and the author Ana Šverko.

The work problematizes the relationship between the Diocletian’s palace – a world heritage site nowadays heavily exposed to mass tourism, which is at the same time the city’s central public space with a strong housing component – and the wider city surroundings. Through historical and theoretical research of this contemporary city with its historical center, the author has tried to combine two terms that are often seen as opposing: development and conservation. She has shown that the contemporary approaches to heritage protection are based on bringing these two terms and practices together. In the book, the key problems of the public space functioning are defined and the theoretical approach of the integration of the inherited urban net into contemporary life offered, advocating the discipline of urban design that prioritizes the regulation of planning, urbanist and architectural activities.

The book is organized in 11 chapters that function both as independent essays and as parts of the whole book: the Diocletian's palace and Split; defining problem; the role of research models in city preservation; the look back: Split’s morphogenesis; to develop and to preserve; the contemporary public space and the life in the historical center; space, place, non-place; Identity and place; the city and Kairos; the city is not a house; the city is a house; in scale 1:1 or planning the day.

It is difficult to imagine another place that would enable us to naturally and easily connect the considerations of numerous important theoreticians, from the establishing of the discipline of urban planning in the middle of the last century till today as well as the contemporary tendencies such as adaptations and recycling and to establish a suggestive parallel in between the biological and urban evolution – in a way that Split and the Diocletian’s palace have enabled us.