Pop-Ups Show Promise and Peril of Modern City-Building
Rowan Moore examines the UK's growing portfolio of pop-up projects. "They are often the creations of young architects who, their talent and energy outrunning their employment opportunities, initiate, design and build these glimpses of what a better city – more open, more social, more pleasurable, more surprising – might be."
"They are reminders that, for all its apparent fixity, built space is always in motion, always prone to being readapted and reimagined," he observes. "At their best they use temporary pleasures to make permanent changes to the way people can inhabit their neighbourhoods."
"It should also be noted that, in a parallel universe, the commitment of talented architects might be spent on things like housing, schools or permanent transformations of cities. There is a correlation between the rise of pop-ups on the one hand and, on the other, the rise of very large architectural practices, run on industrial lines, which shape the places where most of us spend most of our lives."