The ambient becoming of the urban world
The growing interest in ambiances and atmospheres is a hint: our sensitivity to inhabited spaces is indeed changing. What about ambiances in the understanding and the transformation of our sensory conditions of existence? Are we not witnessing the emergence of a new ecology of the senses more attentive to the atmospheric existence of our forms of life? Can we speak of an ambient becoming of the urban world? Asking such questions enables to reveal the powers of ambiances, to highlight what they perform and reflect upon urbanity.
Rather than approaching ambiance as a closed domain of research, we will draw a few lines of flight to help us navigate within this moving ocean: a line of meeting will focus on the various processes of aestheticisation that cross and foreshadow an urban ecology of ambiances; a line of existence will wonder why ambiance is so elusive and why it resists any final determination; a line of paradox will articulate the vital and emotional strength of ambiance and its ability to influence and control; a line of questioning will take the measure of the plurality of the paradigms of ambiance and will question their dialogue and difference; a line of effectuation will accompany ambiance within its material fabric, its effective practices and its scientific uses.
The proposal will be very general, not deepening a particular problem, nor looking for any exhaustive references and pieces of work. Instead, we aim at building a dynamic framework which could provide a basic orientation. We contend that the notion of ambiance operates as an analyser and operator of urban transformations. The purpose will be deliberately exploratory and prospective. The emphasis will focus on the transversal and nomadic characters of the notion of ambiance... on its efficience and modus operandi... on its lesser existence, discreet and subthreshold ...