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About & Contact

The photo essays

In 2019 Besnik Aliaj, rector of Polis University Tirana, and I made a photo essay on the extraordinary developments (many say: insane interventions) in the cente of Skopje, North Macedonia. The experience of making a photo essay was positive.


A return visit to Szczecin (Poland) in 2019, after a long time, motivated me to make a photo essay on new cultural architecture in Polish cities. I made three motor cycle tours to visit main Polish cities and take photos of their new cultural architecture, in the pandemic-summers of 2020 and 2021 and in 2022. My focus was on museums, theatres, and the like in their context. Cultural buildings in the public domain – the outside part with open access. No shopping malls, no office towers, no churches, no buildings that are only visible after passing a paywall. I took ‘new’ arbitrarily as buildings that were opened 2010 onwards and were newly constructed or a result of major redevelopment of existing structures, and ‘main cities’ as major places with a regional function. ‘New’, 'modern' or 'contemporary' architecture are not precise concepts and not limited to physical structures – regeneration contains physically old elements, with added newness and new concepts. 

The selection of buildings was somewhat subjective – personal suggestions and a review of articles and (online) magazines about cultural architecture informed my decisions on places and buildings to be included or to be left out. 

Next to the Summer 2022 trip to Polish cities, I made a motor cycle tour to cities in Northern Spain. 'Beyond Bilbao', it is called. Bilbao's Guggenheim has received much attention, but there are other places too worth a visit.

New photo essays are being prepared. A photo essay on Katendrecht District in Rotterdam, and in 2023 a photo essay will be on 'placelessness' in relation to tourism and city development in Western Balkan cities - that means that places and building are created without any relation to the city, say a shopping mall that could be anywhere. The Starbuckization of city development, to borrow from George Ritzer.*

Also a photo essay on the authenticity of SS Rotterdam, an iconic steam ship turned into a hotel, is also in the plan for 2023.

Your suggestions for interesting European places and themes for new photo essays are welcome!

Polish University & Tirana Architecture Week 2022

Polis University, Tirana, Albania, is a leading specialized university in Albania,  engaged in architecture & planning, environment, business development, engineering, energy and other current themes. After a first edition in 2012, biannually the Tirana Architecture Weeks have been organised. 

During the Tirana Architecture Week 2022, an exhibition of the photo essay was organized in the MAD Centre Gëzim Qëndro in Polis University. The opening was on 28 September.  In the Tirana Diesign Week 2019, the photo essay on Skopje was presented and published in the conference book. 



Polis University

Tirana Architecture Week

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Peter Nientied -  Contact

In the Netherlands, in Albania, the Western Balkans and other parts of Eastern Europe, I work on themes such as such as urban questions, leadership and HRM, sustainable tourism. I also make photos  and photo essays are a simple combination of professional interests and photography. (work) and (photo)

E    nientied1 at chello dot nl

T    +31 six one four four five eight five five nine

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Photo credit: Moet Tsukada

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