The chronicle of increasing isolation of a group of artists attempting to reach the World's most remote human inhabited place, the island of Tristan da Cunha.
Meziara is a village in Northern Lebanon, where most of its residents do business in Nigeria for most of the year, before returning every summer. The suburb to an invisible city.
The extraction and export of 'Jerusalem Stone' is one of the most lucrative businesses in the Palestinian Territories, and remains highly unregulated. Everyone wants a piece of the holy land.
Souvenirs are tokens that help to perpetuate spatial narratives. Mass produced around the world, they serve as a vehicle through which power narratives are unfolded and displayed.
MEMENTO LOCI unpacks some of these strategies.
Slavutych was built to rehouse the workers of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. It is made up of 13 districts, each inspired by a different Soviet city. With 86, we are building a new district based on Athens.
STOP OVER CITY
Moscow City is a decaying business district in Central Moscow. By linking it to the two largest airports in the city and giving it the status of 'international transfer zone' we would revitalize this vacant territory.
STATUES & STATUTES
VDNHk park in central Moscow is a spatial technology that serves to advance an imperialistic idea based on an old regime.
(re)appropriating (post)soviet narratives.
NATION STATE OF MIND
Nation State of Mind proposes an alternative understanding of the nation in a post-national world. What is the role of territoriality and locality in Ecumenopolis?
Mariupol is a mono-industry town in Eastern Ukraine. Its population has been shrinking since the collapse of the USSR. This is a manifesto to embrace its shrinking condition and work with it.
EXPEDITION TO ECUMENOPOLIS
Expedition to Ecumenopolis is a series of workshops that we deliver to different groups in order to collectively think about ideas evolving around contemporary urbanism in the age of hyper-globalisation.
VOCABULARY FOR ECUMENOPOLIS
In the era of Globalization and the Antropocene, we find that there are a new set of urban qualities/phenomena that take place globally. Here is a glossary that attempts to identify some of those.
Memento Loci explores the notion of souvenir culture, and its larger implications at a global scale. We completed this research whilst being theoreticians in residency at das weisse haus in Vienna.
Public spaces of touristic enclaves around the world are dotted by interchangeable souvenirs, which far from reflecting on the peculiarities and characteristics of the place, turn them into a commodity of sorts. By removing the memory aspects of these lieux-de-memoire, today’s souvenirs have become medals of visits, the new version of the passport stamp amongst an increasingly mobile class.
More than mere trinkets, their scale of production and distribution allow for souvenirs to act as legitimizers of dominant spatial narratives (buildings, persons, slogans) – the very choice of reproducing certain icons. – while excluding others. They establish a hierarchy of heritage, deeming only certain elements of the built matrix as bearers of social significance.. Thus, souvenirs are sustaining narratives that are projected onto space by certain people within a certain timeframe. For example, in Vienna, most souvenirs available cover a time period that spans 150 years, neglecting the many stories of a city with over 2000 years of history.
This notion upholds the idea that through souvenirs, a relationship between the inhabitant or visitor of a given territory and its heritage is established, stressing, furthermore, the importance that these totemic objects have in the social construction and perception of these urban enclaves globally.
Project producer and voice over: Alina Bibisheva
das weisse haus in Vienna, Austria
das weisse haus in Vienna/Kunsthall Wien, Austria 2015
tranzit.hu in Budapest, Hungary 2016
Unfolding spatial power narratives through souvenirs
Video Essay/8’54’’ ----- 2015