Review of 'Terrain Vague: Interstices at the Edge of the Pale'
journal article

The concept of terrain vague was first theorized by Ignasi de Sola-Morales in the mid 1990s as a contemporary space of project and design that includes the marginal wastelands and vacant lots that are located outside the city’s productive spaces – which Morales describes as oversights in the landscape that are mentally exterior in the physical interior of the city. Around the same time, the artist and architect collective Stalker defined Terrains Vagues in the plural as spaces of confrontation and contamination between the organic and the inorganic, between nature and artifice that constitute the built city’s negative, the interstitial and the marginal, spaces abandoned by economic forces, or in the process of transformation.

This book Terrain Vague: Interstices at the Edge of the Pale – edited by the architect Manuela Mariani and the professor of English Patrick Barron - seeks to expand on Sola-Morales ideas and to present the terrain vague through a taxonomy of urban empty spaces presented by the authors in the introduction – derelict lands, brownfields, voids, loose spaces, heterotopias, dead zones, urban wilds, counter-sites. The book aims to collectively refine this notion as a central concept of urban planning and design, architecture, landscape architecture, film studies, cultural geography, literature, photography, and cultural studies, looking at possible positive alternatives to the negative images projected into them.

Key words: Terrain Vague; regeneration; landscape
Grichting, Anna. "Review of 'Terrain Vague: Interstices at the Edge of the Pale' By Manuela Mariani and Patrick Barron (editors). London & New York, Routledge, 2014, 256 pages." Archnet-IJAR: International Journal of Architectural Research, vol. 8, issue 1 (2014): 171-172.
Parent Publications

Anna Grichting