To preserve not only architecture, but the identity: a SPbGASU graduate showed the importance of emotions

To preserve not only architecture, but the identity: a SPbGASU graduate showed the importance of emotions

More than 60 Bachelor’s degree and 40 Master’s degree students graduated from the SPbGASU Department of Architectural and Urban Heritage. Each of them had an original and unique topic.

Преподаватели кафедры АГН в Петербурге на Красноармейской во время защиты ВКР 2019

Teachers at the defense of final papers. Head of the Department of AUH Sergey V. Sementsov (on the right) agreed to talk about the specifics of the GQWs-2019.

Practically all the final qualifying works of our graduates were commissioned by the administrations of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region, various committees and departments for the preservation and restoration of historical objects. We now have projects for the Moscow, Pskov, Arkhangelsk regions and the Crimea.

— Head of the SPbGASU
Department of Architectural and Urban Heritage,
Doctor of Architecture, Professor, Sergey V. Sementsov
Оценка работ Сергеем Семенцовым

“A group of Bachelor’s degree students accomplished a very interesting joint work on the topic proposed by the Leningrad Region Administration together with the Administration on Novaya Ladoga City: a design project for the restoration and development of Karl Marx Avenue in Novaya Ladoga.”

The main thoroughfare of the city founded by Peter I in 1704 now it is in a difficult condition, and eight of our graduates got into the matter.

“A master plan was made for the territory, which equals to about a quarter of the city's total area There are several dozens of buildings and structures - administrative, cultural and pilgrim centers, objects related to the memory of the great military leader Alexander Suvorov, a park created under Catherine II, a bus station, a quay, and a pier. Many wooden and brick houses were built in the XVII and XIX centuries.”

At present, about 15-20 objects have already been elaborated on; the restoration and reconstruction on those could start right away.

Подробности о ВКР Маргариты Рединой из архитектурно-строительного ун-та на Красноармейской

This year, we have another very innovative and strong work related to the protection of monuments: graduate student Margarita Redina (supervisor Associate Professor of the Department of AUH Nadezhda A. Akulova) explored the features of visual and emotional perception of St. Petersburg historical environment.

”This topic brings together different methods of study. It emerged at the junction of architectural and construction phenomenon and the human perception. In the course of writing the work, Margarita consulted with urban psychologists – there are only 3 or 4 experts of the kind in St. Petersburg”.

More about the Margarita Redina’s graduation qualifying work

We asked the graduate student to tell us more about her work.

Маргарита Редина рассказывает о ВКР 2019 интервью

“The topic was difficult, but fascinating. I studied Pokrovsky Island in Big Kolomna and the center of the City of Pushkin. These two areas are quite similar to each other at the morphological level: their urban structures are analogous but located in different environments. It was exciting to see how they differ at the emotional level, how dissimilarly they are perceived. In my work, I propose to preserve not singled-out objects, but the environment they belong to. After all, this is part of history, which affects our perception in a special way.

Abroad, for example in Italy or France, special projects are being developed that take perception into account: how we look at architectural monuments, from what perspectives. In Italy they protect even the hills from which panoramas and the center of the city are best observable. It is very important to preserve what has developed historically for future generations in exactly the same form in which it was created.

For example, when one walks along Nevsky Avenue, they see beautiful buildings, a perspective onto the spire of the Admiralty, and experience emotional satisfaction. This is exactly what is called emotional perception. Visual perception is what we see, while emotional perception is whether we like it or not. No doubt, this is quite an individual thing, largely depending on the education, aesthetic preferences, age, and even gender of the looker. In my work, I tried to analyze these subjective characteristics and come up with objective criteria that could form the basis of the attitude for the preservation of heritage objects.

We see how modern construction development changes the unique panorama of our cities, the historical urban planning structure, the system of dominants, and how it distorts not only our visual but also emotional perception

The architectural landmark of St. Petersburg is its only one of its kind panorama with the bridges and spires, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, the Peter and Paul fortress. When we see the outline of the panorama, we immediately know that this is our city. Modern buildings often make cities faceless: under the globalization, they become quite alike to each other. I am sure that it is necessary to preserve the local identity of not only the architecture, but also the identity and uniqueness of the environment".

Text: Angela Semicheva

Take a look at the works of the department o Architectural and Urban Heritage and read about the training programs at the department

Партнёр: Санкт-Петербургский государственный архитектурно-строительный университет