Princeton | Places Urban Imagination Prize Award announces winner Dasha Kuletskaya


Originally posted on Places Journal.


We’re pleased to announce that Dasha Kuletskaya has been awarded the latest Princeton | Places Urban Imagination Prize, the theme of which is “Solidarities.”

Her project, “Solidarities, After Socialism” will tell the story of the fragile but tenacious democracy movement in Belarus, focusing on the mass mobilization in Minsk in summer 2020, the largest public protest in the country since the dissolution of the Soviet Union three decades ago. The article will explore the rise of mutual support networks both virtual and physical, and delve into the paradoxical spatial disposition of the protests, from the over-controlled and surveilled public squares to the highly energized housing complexes across the city.

Kuletskaya is currently a doctoral candidate at RWTH Aachen University, in Aachen, Germany; the focus of her studies is housing. Born and raised in Belarus, Kuletskaya holds degrees in architecture from the Belarusian National Technical University and the Vienna University of Technology.

A collaboration between the Princeton Urban Imagination Center and Places Journal, the prize was established in 2020 to encourage ambitious public scholarship in the design disciplines. The recipient of the inaugural prize was city planning scholar Shoshana R. Goldstein, who produced the article Urban Exodus, Mobility Justice, published in March 2022.

“We received a diverse set of applications for this edition of our collaboration with Places Journal,” said Marshall B. Brown, director of the Urban Imagination Center. “Now we look forward to the essay by Dasha Kuletskaya, on a timely topic in a region that is undergoing dramatic changes.”

This year’s selection panel consisted of M. Christine Boyer, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Architecture and Urbanism at Princeton School of Architecture; Judith Hamera, professor of dance in the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University; Nancy Levinson, editor and executive director of Places; and Frances Richard, senior editor of Places. Boyer and Hamera are both members of the Executive Committee of the Urban Imagination Center.