100 Urban Trends: A Glossary of Ideas

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Today, the BMW Guggenheim Lab announced the publication of 100 Urban Trends: A Glossary of Ideas from the two BMW Guggenheim Labs held in New York and Mumbai. Complementing the Berlin Lab trends published in November 2012, the New York and Mumbai editions round out a series of glossaries showcasing the most talked-about urban trends from the Lab’s three global stops to date, and create a new resource for understanding the way people relate to and live in cities. All three glossaries, which have been written by Lab curator Maria Nicanor, curatorial assistants Amara Antilla and Stephanie Kwai, and the Lab’s resident writer, Christine McLaren, can be accessed online in a dynamic interactive feature designed by Collective Assembly at 100urbantrends.org The glossaries, designed by graphic designers Sulki & Min, are also available on the BMW Guggenheim Lab website.

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“These glossaries are meant to further the conversations started by the Lab and spark analyses of these three cities and comparisons of the respective urban environments,” stated Richard Armstrong, Director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation. “Integral to these glossaries is the concept of cities as hubs for ideas, and how the Lab has captured some of the prevailing thoughts citizens and experts alike have about their cities.”

The glossaries include trends such as the following, with details of Lab programs that relate to the trend and a list of related terms:

· 10,000 Honks: celebrity cricket player Sachin Tendulkar, who visited the Mumbai Lab, suggested a rule that would limit every car to 10,000 honks after the time of its purchase. The regulation would help control sound pollution in Mumbai’s streets and fund urban noise-reduction projects, as drivers would need to purchase any additional honks from the government. (Mumbai)

· Glocalism: combining “local” and “global,” this term speaks to two forces at play in all neighborhoods. In a climate shaped by rapid globalization and multinational corporations, widespread sameness is evident in any cosmopolitan hub. Conversely, each city has its own local, vernacular traditions. Glocalism is the merging of these two seemingly opposing forces. (New York)

· Retrofitting Infrastructure: the reimagining of an existing piece of major organizational infrastructure (e.g., transportation, water, sewage, and electricity). More than half of the world’s population now lives in cities. Although cities are more energy efficient than areas of suburban sprawl, they still face challenges to sustainable living—mainly due to the fact that the major infrastructure necessary to provide essential needs for residents and businesses has already been put in place. Rather than expending additional energy, resources, and funds on demolishing heavy infrastructure to improve city living, retrofitting infrastructure has become an alternative solution. (Mumbai)

“The aim of the exhibition is to take the temperature of three particular cities during a specific period of time—New York, Berlin, and Mumbai between 2011 and 2013—and to understand the ideas that city experts and non-experts discussed for the present and future of cities,” said Lab curator Maria Nicanor. “By looking at learnings from the cities the Lab has visited alongside new ideas from other global urban centers, we are able to gain a more comprehensive understanding of cities today.”


100 Urban Trends from New York, Berlin, and Mumbai Labs to Be Explored in BMW Guggenheim Lab Exhibition at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York from October 11, 2013 to January 5, 2014

SOURCE | BMW Guggenheim Lab

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