Havana Studio Student Work

Regla Survey 2018 – 2019

Regla and Centro Habana evidence self-construction activity differently because of differences in urban typology. The townscape of Regla consists of modest structures, largely one- and two-stories high, with sun-filled streets. When self-builders in Regla improve their apartments it is evidenced as a complete one-, two-, or three-story architectural re-designs.
Here, in 91 frames is the epic two-year tale of the Regla Survey.

Centro Habana Survey 2020

Centro Habana is taller, its buildings often grand, its streets are frequently in shadow. When self-builders improve their apartments in Centro Habana it is manifested in fragmentary modifications of handsome heritage facades which are owned collectively. 
Here, in 113 frames is the Survey by Remote During Covid-19.

Student Credits

In-semester work involved about 642 STUDENT WORK HOURS. Taking and organizing near 7000 field photos, generating about 60 street-front slide-studies, and developing a draft category system was achieved by: 

  • Bennet Donine
  • Maria Belen Fodde
  • Olivia Gamber
  • Maren Hurley-Matz
  • Kristian Keene
  • Alyssa Kropp
  • Clara Marina von Loebenstein
  • Martino Ozza
  • Cassidy Nelson
  • Tripti Sahni
  •  Douglas Salathe
  • Claudio De Los Reyes Terán

Post-semester work involved an additional 422 STUDENT WORK HOURS.

In summer 2018 Douglas Salathe and Clara Marina von Loebenstein enlarged the survey sample from about 40-percent to 50-percent while also generating a 516 building category file which would not have been possible without the guidance of Claudia Castillo de la Cruz, Cuban architect, urban planner, and former 10-year veteran of the Office of the Historian of the City of Havana.

During the following academic year the survey sample was enlarged to about 95% by Douglas Salathe, Clara Marina von Loebenstein, Maria Belen Fodde, and Claudio De Los Reyes Terán. Claudio shouldered an exceptional volume of labor: he assured that the categorization of the survey was completed, managed the Excel data base, generated a GIS activated map of the survey zone, and linked the two together.

Janna Akimova, a 2019 Havana Studio student, while helping to increase the survey sample also created a study of the aesthetic attributes of self-built constructions which was exhibited at the Ludwig Foundation in December 2019. To see Janna Akimova’s exhibition panels, click here.

Professor Steven Metz gave crucial guidance in regard to GIS mapping for the Regla Survey

Jill Hamberg and Ernesto Oroza offered thoughtful critiques of the survey in process.

To see Alyssa Kropp’s Mobile Guide To the Landmarks of Havana, click here.

Martino Ozza (who was auditing the course) translated for Professor Tung during a pre-semester research trip in Havana

The Spring 2020 Havana Studio was staying on average for near 2-hours more than the scheduled Tuesday class while preparing for a spring-break field-trip to Havana. Then: Covid. Yet a draft test survey had already been accomplished by: 

  • Elizabeth Alvarez
  • Liliana Avila
  • Jorge Cabanillas
  •  Daniel Chu
  • Rachel Crist
  • Tesa Reid
  • Carmen Ruiz Cruz
  • Casey Sandler
  • Nicola Stettler
  • Sarah Williamson.

In the last four weeks of the semester Elizabeth Alvarez, Jorge Cabanillas, Daniel Chu, Rachel Crist, Tesa Reid, and Carmen Ruiz Cruz met for additional Saturday sessions with Professor Tung to explore the analytic potential of a Centro Habana photo-analysis.

Across the summer an additional 170 student work hours were invested in a Centro Habana Test Survey by Carmen Ruiz Cruz, Daniel Chu, and Janna Akimova who refined the study with the help of Claudia Castillo de la Cruz.

To see Carmen Ruiz Cruz’s full survey of Self-Built Constructions in Historic Façades and Daniel Chu’s analysis of the problems in achieving GIS in Centro Habana, click here.

To see Janna Akimova’s study of Aesthetic Aspects Of Self-Built Constructions, click here.

Professor Stephen Metz gave crucial guidance in regard GIS mapping for Centro Habana. 

Professors Maria Carrizosa, Margarita Gutman, Michael Cohen, and Gabriel Vignoli provided penetrating critiques of the project which advanced communal critical thinking. Maria Carrizosa also guest-taught several meaty classes after the Covid-related cancellation of the mid-semester field trip.