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Scholarship of Design
Canfield Drive:
Commemorative Atmospheres of Impasse
Linda Zhang & Biko Mandela Gray
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In this article, the authors conceptualize atmosphere as an affective reality that disrupts stable narratives of memory and history in architecture. Drawing on Canfield Drive—the street where Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson killed Michael Brown—the authors used the slipcasting technique to show how architectural commemorative practices can often produce unresolved and unresolvable tensions. Through slipcasting, the authors suggest a commemorative practice of atmospheric impasse: instead of turning to the past as a singular, stable historical referent, people perform commemorative practices that can speak to the past as fractured spaces of perpetual contestation.

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