Public Meetings

There  are several public meetings in the course of the project. To be updated regularily about these meetings, we invite you to subscribe to our newsletter

Finissage of the travelling exhibition in Dresden

On 25 February 2024, to mark the end of the exhibition at “Dresden-Brest: the urban imagination under (re)construction”, a guided tour by Dresden exhibition curator Hans-Goerg Lippert took place, once again offering an in-depth insight into the history and present of the two cities. The fact that a relatively small group of around a dozen people took part in the event meant that not only was it possible to describe the concept and content of the exhibition in detail once again, but also to have some interesting personal discussions with the visitors.

A round table in Dresden

On 23 February 2024, the Zentrum für Baukultur Sachsen hosted a round table discussion on the theme of urban visions and identity, organised as part of the events accompanying the exhibition “Dresden – Brest: the urban imagination under (re)construction”. Matthias Lerm (Director of the Department of Urban Planning and Mobility at the City of Dresden), Marcus van Reimersdahl (Head of University Construction at the Saxon State Ministry of Science and the Arts) and Angela Mensing-de Jong (Professor of Urban Planning at the Technical University of Dresden) discussed – on the basis of a comparison between Brest and Dresden – the current state of construction and planning in Dresden and other cities, as well as its context and the networks of players involved. Professor Hans-Georg Lippert from the Technical University of Dresden moderated the discussion.

The event attracted an unexpectedly large number of participants; the Zentrum für Baukultur Sachsen had to provide all the seating available, and even then some visitors had to make do with standing room only. This lively and relevant round table undoubtedly helped to deepen the audience’s understanding of the importance of urban vision and identity. It brought a whole range of new ideas to the debate on the future of urban living spaces and their design, and also provided small but important tools for the work on site.

Film evening in Dresden: What remains – post-war modernist architecture in Dresden

On 8 February, a movieevening was held as part of the RES URBANAE project at the Zentrum für Baukultur Sachsen. The movie “Was bleibt – Architektur der Nachkriegsmoderne in Dresden?” (What remains – post-war modernist architecture in Dresden), which was made in 2009, was presented. (director: Ralf Kukula, screenplay: Susann Buttolo) The film, which does without commentary and relies entirely on images, contemporary witnesses and professional expertise, marked the beginning of the discussion about so-called Eastern Modernism 15 years ago. It continues to open up a space for in-depth dialogue about the future of GDR architecture in Dresden, the challenges of monument preservation and the question of how these buildings can be integrated into the changing urban landscape without losing their original identity and significance. The event was unusually well attended, which was certainly also due to the fact that Ralf Kukula and Susann Buttolo were both present and were also able to explain their film. This was followed by a lively discussion and many personal conversations.

Saxony’s distant neighbour: Brittany – a maritime country between Celtic heritage and French presence

On 20 January 2024, Professor Ingo Kolboom, Emeritus Professor of French Studies and Francophonie at the Technical University of Dresden and long-standing President of the Saxo-Breton Association (which was unfortunately dissolved in 2020), spoke at the Saxon Centre for Architectural Culture about the history of the Saxo-Breton regional partnership and its prospects for the near future. Ingo Kolboom is not only an extremely competent university professor. He has also always been in touch with political circles, as an advisor to government institutions and as a highly committed member of bi-national or international cultural policy networks. He is a recognised specialist in Franco-German relations, maintains close contacts with the Canadian region of Quebec and… he loves Brittany! The lecture, co-hosted by an actor who delivered long passages of quotations, was a real highlight of the programme accompanying the exhibition “Dresden – Brest: the urban imagination under (re)construction”. Anyone who previously had only a vague idea of Brittany learned a lot of new and interesting things, and Ingo Kolboom certainly awakened in many of his listeners a desire to explore this region for themselves.

Meeting with artist Jahna Dahms in Dresden

On 18 January 2024, artist Jahna Dahms gave an art lecture at the Zentrum für Baukultur Sachsen, in which she presented her art project PARKPLATZ HISTORICAL LAYERS.

The project grew out of a reflection on the archaeological hypothesis that an ancient settlement with a Bronze Age cult site could have been located in the heart of Dresden before the city was actually founded. This gave rise to the idea that the site of Dresden’s Frauenkirche was not only the historical starting point, but perhaps also the spiritual starting point for the settlement, which could explain the great desire to rebuild the Frauenkirche, even though there was no community for this church at the time.

In order to explore this idea further and gain a better understanding of the site, an in-depth survey was carried out. This work revealed an unusual spacing of marking lines in a car park.

Archaeological excavations carried out in 2001/2002 confirmed the existence of the oldest church and settlement from the Bronze Age, and uncovered layers of settlement and building dating from almost every century thereafter. In collaboration with the Saxon Regional Archaeological Office and investor Arturo Prisco, it has been possible to reconstruct the marking lines of the car park in the excavation area. The large-format planimetric drawing superimposes not only the structure of the excavated soil, but also the differences in height of the wall crowns, which can be as much as 8 metres high.

The artwork shows an exceptional congruence between the historic layout of the site and the car park, which has been repeated over the centuries. A bird’s-eye view highlighted the fascinating coincidence of different historical layers in the excavation plan. The drawing conveys the genius loci of the site and reveals the fascinating beauty of historical continuity.

Converging Visions: Art Lecture by Ivana Radovanovic at the Center for Building Culture Saxony

On December 16, 2023, Ivana Radovanovic, a composer known for her work with Res Urbanae, delivered a lecture showcasing her development as a composer, sharing her musical journey, and presenting a selection of her work ranging from compositions for ensembles and orchestras to audiovisual works for the stage.

Ivana was selected from over 100 applicants to participate in the EU project Res Urbanae, during which she undertook artist residencies in Brest and Dresden. She will share her experiences from the residency with the audience and provide a detailed explanation of “Converging Visions,” a piece she specifically created for the project’s traveling exhibition (shown at the Transportation Museum in Dresden from December 16, 2023, to February 25, 2024):

“Converging Visions is a musical story about two different cities with a shared destiny. During my stays in Brest and Dresden, I endeavored to immerse myself in the history, culture, and people of these two cities, with the primary aim of truly sensing their essence. By imagining the past, observing the present, and looking into the future, I crafted two musical portraits depicting these cities in reconstruction as two harmoniously converging visions.”

Here is the link to Ivana’s website:

Street Art performance, by Wen2

On June 23, 2023, during a performance evening, Wen2 created an original graffiti for the exhibition “Brest-Dresden: urban imagination under (re)construction”.

Wen2 is a well-known graffiti artist from Brest. Strongly inspired by his immediate surroundings, Wen2 offers street art fans works with a dreamlike world that mixes urbanism and street culture through urban landscapes such as factories, warehouses or even abandoned apartment buildings with traditional and cultural architecture representative of Brittany. In this way, they offer a timeless, floating place where one likes to retreat and travel…

Wen2 graffito
Wen2 graffito

Converging Visions

On June 24, Ivana Radovanovic – a composer who composed pieces for Res Urbanae – gave a lecture in which she presented her development as a composer, shared her musical career and showed a selection of her work, ranging from compositions for ensemble and orchestra to audiovisual works for the stage.
Ivana’s artistic work is mainly focused on the composition of audiovisual scenes, in which the different disciplines of the work are considered as independent art objects. The starting point or idea of her work is often a personal statement, a commentary on current political and sociological issues and phenomena. Emotional expression and atmosphere also play a major role in her compositions.
Ivana was selected from over 100 applicants to complete an artist residency in Brest and Dresden as part of the EU project Res Urbanae. She will share her experiences during the residency with the audience and give a more detailed explanation of the piece she created specifically for the project’s traveling exhibition (which will be on display at the Ateliers des Capucins from June 22 to September 17, 2023) :

“Converging Visions is a musical story that revolves around two different cities with a common destiny. During my stay in Brest and Dresden, I made an effort to immerse myself in the history, culture and people of these two cities, with the primary goal of truly feeling their essence. By imagining the past, observing the present and looking into the future, I created two musical portraits that portray these cities undergoing reconstruction like two harmoniously converging visions.”

Discussion with Ivana Radovanovic – the artist in residence

Ivana Radovanovic is a young Serbian artist living in Austria. In order to create an original soundwork for the project Res Urbanae, she explored the two cities of Brest and Dresden in the beginning of 2023. 

On January 24, 2023, Ivana Radovanovic met with interested residents of Brest to talk about her experience of the city and her art. A lively exchange ensued in a small group, which stimulated her thoughts before she traveled on to Dresden a few days later.

Roundtable discussion

The January 20, 2023 roundtable discussion at the Ateliers des Capucins auditorium, “Art and the City: Constructions, Deconstructions” featured three artists who work on the theme of the city. Gwenaëlle Magadur, Wen2 and Stéphane Couturier spoke about their works and about the role of the imagination in (re)creating the identity of cities. 

three artworks of the three artists that took part in the round table discussion

Brest made of sugar

On 4th of February 2023, it was the children who decided what Brest should look like. Together with architect Sophie Roche, they built schools with large courtyards, swimming pools, a city hall and many other things out of sugar cubes. This morning definitely trained some future architects!

Brest, built by children from sugar
Brest, built by children from sugar