Aesthetics of Gentrification

deadline for submissions: 
October 26, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
SLOW LAB (University of Oregon, College of Design)
contact email: 

Aesthetics of Gentrification: Art, Architecture, and Displacement


International Conference

University of Oregon in Portland

April 5-6, 2019

Keynote Speakers:

Pheng Cheah (University of California, Berkeley)

Ayona Datta (Kings College London)


Organized by the University of Oregon SLOW LAB, this interdisciplinary conference brings together scholars from across the humanities, social sciences, and art and design fields to explore the aesthetic dimensions of gentrification in the present era of accelerated urbanism.

Gentrification is reshaping cities worldwide, resulting in seductive spaces and exclusive communities that aspire to innovation, creativity, sustainability, and technological sophistication. Gentrification is also contributing to growing social-spatial division and urban inequality and precarity. In a time of escalating housing crisis and unaffordable cities, scholars speak of eco-gentrification, techno-gentrification, super-gentrification, and planetary-gentrification to describe the different forms and scales of involuntary displacement occurring in vulnerable communities in response to current patterns of development and the hype-driven discourses of the creative city, smart city, and sustainable city.

In this context, how do contemporary practices in art, architecture, and related fields help to produce or resist gentrification? What does gentrification look and feel like in specific sites and communities, and how is that appearance or feeling implicated in promoting stylized renewal to a privileged public? To what extent do the aesthetics of displacement travel globally between cities and cultures? And in what ways do those aesthetics express contested conditions of migration and mobility? Addressing such questions, this conference seeks to examine the relationship between aesthetics and gentrification in contemporary cities from multiple, comparative, and transnational perspectives.

Please email proposals (max. 300 words) for 20-minute papers, together with a short CV, before October 26, 2018 to the organizer, Christoph Lindner (University of Oregon):

More information is available in the “events” section of the SLOW LAB website:

A selection of the conference papers will be published as an edited book intended for the Cities and Cultures book series at Amsterdam University Press: