Conceição Silva, "the architect of tourism"

"from Coderch to Candilis"




In 1973, Gustavo Gili published the Spanish version of Planning and Design for Leisure, by Georges Candilis. In the Introduction, the author emphasised that "from the moment we admit that mass leisure is in the process of becoming a crucial phenomenon of contemporary civilisation, we have the duty ¼ to clarify its true meaning, its content, its varied and multiple aspects, as well as the growing and preponderant role it is called to have in our society". From the disciplinary point of view, the situation demanded "a new architecture: the architecture of leisure".

For Candilis, one of the founders of Team 10, tourism projects associated with the emerging welfare and mass consumer society represented the opportunity to test new urban planning and housing models which, as an alternative to the practices inherited from modernity, reclaimed denser patterns of territorial occupation and more diversified formulas of living. Many of the principles expressed by Candilis had already been announced by José Antonio Coderch, also a member of Team 10, in the unbuilt project of the Torre Valentina holiday complex, presented in 1959 at the last CIAM. The difference was now in the scale of the interventions. Responding to the democratic ideal of "leisure for the greatest number", there is an evolution in the traditional forms of tourism exploration, with the hotel giving way to the holiday mega-structure and the city of leisure. In Portugal, the protagonist of this transition would be Francisco Conceição Silva, “the architect of tourism”.

Keywords: Team 10, Georges Candilis, Architecture and Urbanism, Mass Tourism, Conceição Silva



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