A Conversation with Santiago Calatrava

Formal Democracy

Ana María Torres 

“Valencia’s project is very particular in responding to the circumstances of the moment – the work of a particular epoch. Why of an epoch? Because I began to work in Spain and in Valencia when democracy arrived. In my modest contribution I am enormously satisfied that together with other colleagues we have made it understood that democracy is good not only for the people but also for architecture,” comments Santiago Calatrava speaking of the City of Arts and Sciences.

Since the 1980s, culture and entertainment have been the new keystones that governments have used to attract so-called ‘cultural tourism.’ In looking for new economic resources, governments identified the cultural modernity of cities and sponsored urban interventions where leisure, culture and tourism coalesced. The city of the Turia used this strategy to change its tourist profile, the City of Arts and Sciences being the prime example... [+]

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