The Bartlett School of Architecture


Female Imagination and the Production of Space - Bartlett International Lecture Series

03 March 2021, 6:00 pm–7:30 pm

Image: Izaskun Chinchilla Moreno

This event is free.

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The Bartlett School of Architecture

This event will be streamed live on The Bartlett School of Architecture's YouTube channel at 18:00 GMT. No registration is required.


This event, streamed live on The Bartlett School of Architecture's YouTube channel and focusing on the role of female imagination in the production of space and the built environment, will be a design conversation between co-hosts Penelope Haralambidou and Izaskun Chinchilla and Bartlett alumni John Cruwys, Faye Greenwood, Paula Strunden and Lewis Williams.

This event forms part of The Bartlett International Lecture Series Spring 2021.  


The event will start by discussing French medieval author Christine de Pizan’s The Book of the City of Ladies from 1405. In this proto-feminist, prophetic text, accompanied by a series of miniature illustrations, Christine describes her construction of a defensive city to protect women against misogyny. Casting Christine as the first speculative female architect we will ask why her desire for a city shaped by female imagination more than 600 years ago remains largely unfulfilled. Will we experience the creation of the female city in the next 600 years and how can we rethink the tools that women will need for designing it?

We will continue by questioning the recent tendency of cultural institutions seeking to discover and remember women that have excelled in traditionally male endeavours and will ask whether we should also look for and celebrate female sensibilities and technologies. What about love letters, historical culinary landmarks, beautifully arranged tables, flower bouquets or embroidered skirts? If we change the focus, women are no longer exceptional marginal cases in a male dominated field. Is painting more important than embroidery, academia more significant than domestic education, or medicine more essential than cooking?  

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Image: Izaskun Chinchilla Architects, Georgia's Secret Garden, Casa Decor 2019, Madrid, Spain