Memory & Space

In last week’s CTS class, I came across a quote that I thought is very relevant to Aldo Rossi,

“The city remembers through buildings – preservation of buildings is the same as preservation of memories in the human mind.”


Who is Aldo Rossi?

An Italian architect and designer with many achievements. He is very famous, known in particular for his skill in theory, drawing, architecture and product design.


For Rossi, cities should be seen as a construction with time. Buildings should be renovated and redesigned, not demolished. Their structure should be preserved, as people will remember any city they have been in by the places they visited (the quote that I have already mentioned). This means its buildings, where the visitors will create memories according to the walls and environments within them. He also mentioned that, through reconstruction, a building will lose its identity; it is like cutting a plant from its roots.

Honestly I never thought of reconstructing buildings in that way, but while reading Rossi’s theories, I became convinced, and it made me think of many things I had never thought of before.
For instance, this quote “Instead of form follows function, form follows memory.”
Before designing any building, as a designer, it is important to think of how the visitors will be feeling, what message are you giving them and in what in environment will those humans be, all of this will impact on the memories that they will have.

Finally, Rossi gave me a feeling that all his sketches, designs and building are based on old and new memories.


Dhairaybablani (2014) Works of Aldo Rossi Available at: Accessed on: October 2015

Brian McHale (2015) The Cambridge Introduction to Postmodernism New York: Cambridge University Press

Pallasma, J. (2012) The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses Chichester: Wiley

Rossi, A. (1982) The Architecture of the City New York: MIT Press