This thesis revolves around the idea of ‘dissolving and resolving’, inspired by Venice’s material deterioration coupled with the subtler social erosion of ‘everyday life’. Water has the power to fragment, dissolve, erode, and destroy, but out of this solution there is also the potential for new things to form. Like the silt layers under Venice which were reduced to tiny particles over millennia by water flows, the Venice of today is being reduced to a social and cultural alluvium as water slowly tears at the walls and relationships of the city, and before long the ‘ordinary’ is in danger of being forgotten.
Starting with themes of collecting fragments and memories present in Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, I have investigated an architectural response which seeks to gather together the flotsam and physical fragments of the city in order to preserve a vivid story of everyday life. My proposal for Casa Di Relitti is an architecture which is expressive of the dissolving and resolving nature of water, where the dissolved substances and narratives of the city can find new form.
The main architectural intentions of the proposal are to define a variety of integrated public spaces as part of a larger civic masterplan, and to explore the use of bricks which I proposed could be made locally from the sediments in Venice's canals.