The Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm and the University of Basel are collaborating in the organization of the international summer program Difficult Heritage. Coordinated by the Decolonizing Architecture Course from Sweden and the Critical Urbanism course from Switzerland, the program takes place at Borgo Rizza (Syracuse, Italy) from 30 August to 7 September 2021, in coordination with Carlentini Municipality, as well as the local university and associations.
The program is constituted by a series of lectures, seminars, workshop, readings and site visits centered around the rural town of Borgo Rizza, build in 1940 by the ‘Ente della colonizzazione’ established by the fascist regime to colonize the south of Italy perceived as backward and underdeveloped.
The town seems a perfect place for participants to analyze, reflect and intervene in the debate regarding the architectural heritage associated to painful and violent memories and more broadly to problematize the colonial relation with the countryside, especially after the renew attention due the pandemic.
The summer program takes place inside the former ‘entity of colonization’ and constitutes the first intensive study period for the Decolonizing Architecture Advanced Course 2020/21 participants.