Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Radical Nature
Recently I noticed that I have started looking more and more at nature within the context of our urban environment. To begin research around this topic I have just finished looking at the exhibition catalogue for, 'Radical Nature: Art and Architecture for a Changing Planet'. The exhibition questions the value and meaning of nature in the context of the urban.

You can view images of work from the exhibition here:

 I am particularly interested in the idea that nature is segregated from our everyday lives and controlled in such a way as to reinforce the fact that we are living in a predetermined world. It is as though nature is seen to be a threat to the stability of society's infrastructure and must therefore be repressed.

In this exhibition the artists attempt to reconnect man with nature, suggesting that they are fundamentally interdependent upon one another within a fragile system. It also breaks down the portrayed division between architecture and the natural world. As previously discussed, building matter originates from nature before returning to its original stte through dereliction and decay. 

Friday, 2 July 2010

Empty Space
Thinking about the ideas that Doreen Massey had highlighted in her book 'For Space' (see previous post), I began noticing the physical division of space by fences and walls and I became particularly interested in areas that were not in use and yet cordoned off in some way to prevent access. To draw attention to these 'dead' spaces I weaved red ribbon in-between the entrances and added a bow in reference to grand openings of finished developments.

For Space
I recently read a book called 'For Space' by Doreen Massey due to my interest in public spaces and place-making strategies. In the book she considers space as 'interaction' rather than just being structural, explaining that it is a continuous production and reconfiguration of heterogeneity in all its forms (and is therefore the opposite of that which is sterile and still.)

She also discusses how space has been divided up into 'places' as a tool for imagining and organising global space. This in turn is a refusal to acknowledge the multiplicities of space, its fractures and its dynamism.

This then leads on to a very interesting discussion around ideas of globalisation. Importantly it is pointed out that we are currently experiencing a Neo Liberal Capitalist form of globalisation led by multi-nationals. It is projected that this is the only form of globalisation that exists with the whole world following a single trajectory with some countries simply being 'behind' others. This clearly does not live up to the requirement that space is always and ever open, constantly in the process of being made.