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Land Outside Capital

Thu, Nov 16, 2023    6pm

Land Outside Capital
November 16, 2023, 6pm CST (7pm EST)
Logan Center, University of Chicago
This event will be held in person and on Zoom.
Please email buellcenter@columbia.edu to RSVP or register for the Zoom link

As discussions of “returning” lands to the dispossessed become more widespread, questions arise about whether land can ever be considered, managed, or inhabited as a “gift.” What cultural and architectural practices arise when land is valued outside of market capital? Ana Maria León and Łukasz Stanek report from contemporary architectural examples in Ghana and Chile.


  • Łukasz Stanek (University of Michigan)
  • Ana María León (Harvard GSD)
  • Response by Jacobé Huet (University of Chicago)

Organized as one of the “Conversations on Architecture and Land in and out of the Americas” by the Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture at GSAPP.

Łukasz Stanek is Professor of Architectural History at A. Alfred Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. Stanek authored Henri Lefebvre on Space: Architecture, Urban Research, and the Production of Theory (2011) and Architecture in Global Socialism: Eastern Europe, West Africa, and the Middle East in the Cold War (2020), which won the Alice Davis Hitchcock Medallion by the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain, among others. Stanek taught at the ETH Zurich (Switzerland), the University of Manchester (UK), and held guest professorships at Harvard University (USA) and the University of Ghana (Ghana).

Ana María León is an architect, a teacher, and a historian of texts, images, objects, buildings, and landscapes. Her work studies how spatial practices shape the modernity and coloniality of the Americas. León is co-founder of several collaborations laboring to broaden the reach of architectural history including Nuestro Norte es el Sur and the Settler Colonial City Project. She has co-organized several workshops exploring architectural history’s relationship to intersectional feminism, the global, the South, decolonization, and antiracism, and is instigator and co-editor of the SPACE/RACE, SPACE/GENDER, SPACE/BODY, and SPACE/LABOR crowdsourced reading lists. León is author of Modernity for the Masses: Antonio Bonet’s Dreams for Buenos Aires and A Ruin in Reverse / Bones of the Nation. León is Associate Professor at the Harvard GSD, her current projects examine spatial tactics against the Chilean dictatorship and the intersection of modern architecture and Indigenous groups in the Americas.

Jacobé Huet is Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago. As a historian of modern architecture in the transcultural Mediterranean, Huet is particularly interested in the circulation of forms and ideas, intersections between modernism and vernacular, and depictions of architecture in art and literature. Huet is completing the manuscript for her first book, a reciprocal history of the white cube as a vernacular-modernist motif in the colonial and postcolonial Mediterranean.