URBAN + INTERIOR
The conjunction 'urban + interior' brings together two conditions which are often posed as dichotomies. Here rather than a relation of either/or – either interior or urban – the relation is one of addition, of putting together in a propositional manner. Making relations between interior and urban is not new, and especially not in the discourse of interior design and interior architecture. The writings of the philosopher Walter Benjamin are often cited in histories and theories of interiors –
... amics between interior and urban expressed in the relation between the private interior of the collector and the urban industrial city; the flâneur's urban meanderings and outside-in gaze. Over a hundred years later, the question of how to inhabit the urban is still pertinent but the conditions are different. Delineations of private and public, spatial and temporal relations inflected by industrialisation, globalisation, migration and digital technologies have transformed interior and urban environments. The proposition of the conjunction urban + interior posed in the current issue of this journal invites consideration and experimentation in relation to questions of inhabitation in urban environments and how might the urban infiltrate interior environments. This involves not only thinking about the conjunction coming from interior design in relation to the urban but also the transformation of the interior by the urban. The photographs and writings of Mark Pimlott, addressing the issue of interior territories and the public interior, and the architectural historian Charles Rice and his work on interior urbanism are significant contemporary contributions to and examples of the criticality and potential of this conjunction.