The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


City Unfinished: Lima and reflexions on longitudinal film

02 December 2020, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

ciudad infinita

Event Information

Open to





Rita Lambert


Virtual event

Join us for a film screening of Ciudad Infinita, Voces de El Ermitaño (2018) and a conversation between Dr. Kathrin Golda-Pongratz and Prof. Caroline Moser on urban longitudinal research methodology through film.  

The event will also feature interpretation into Spanish provided by students of the Interpreting and Languages team at London Metropolitan University as part of our new partnership.

About the film

Ciudad Infinita – Voces de El Ermitaño [City Unfinished – Voices of El Ermitaño]
Directed by Dr. Kathrin Golda-Pongratz and Rodrigo Flores (2018)

The project originates in the rediscovery of the historic and at the time censured documentary “A Roof of my Own” (UNTV, 1964) which portrays the formation of the self-built neighbourhood El Ermitaño in Lima, Peru. The return of this film to the place where it once was filmed and its projection in the neighbourhood in 2016 started a memory activation process and was the beginning of the documentary “Ciudad Infinita – Voces de El Ermitaño” [City Unfinished – Voices of El Ermitaño]” which was produced in Lima between 2016 and 2018. It was self-financed and partially funded by World-Habitat and by Crowdfunding.

The documentary visualises the contemporary challenges of El Ermitaño by reactivating the memory of its origins and of its multiple identities produced by migration. At the same time, it alerts on current problems, the loss of a sense of community and the high risk for dwellers in unstable hill invasions, the unique ecosystem of the Lomas and for unprotected archaeological sites in the area. The protagonists of the documentary give evidence of how important public policies are for those sectors of Lima, where organized land-trafficking and uncontrolled urban expansion has become a serious issue. The documentary seeks to inspire tactics and policies for participatory interventions in self-built neighbourhoods and to collectively improve their quality of life.

Speaker Bios

Dr. Kathrin Golda-Pongratz is an architect, urbanist and urban researcher. She is a professor at the urbanism department at UPC-BarcelonaTech, teaches at UIC Barcelona School of Architecture and lectures and publishes internationally. Her research focuses on urban memory, urban culture(s) and public space, Hispano-American urbanism, postcolonial urbanization, non-formal urbanism and place-making strategies. 

Prof Caroline Moser is an urban social anthropologist and social policy specialist. She has more than forty years working on the interrelationship between theory and practice around the three main urban development themes of gender, asset accumulation and violence and conflict. Caroline was one of the producers of the film Calle K.


Image credit: Dr. Kathrin Golda-Pongratz