Guide Locality, Regeneration & Divers[c]ities

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Changes to equality legislation means that there race is no longer a specific area of focus. Community organisations struggle to get funding and recognition. Diversity is often used to market an area to raise investment. Diverse populations are left out of consultation and do not see the benefits. Black people continue to face racism and discrimination in the labour market. New migrants remind us that integration is a two-way process. Part 1 of the 'They call it regeneration' comic strip.

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Part 1 of 'The rise and fall of community organisation' comic strip. Part 2 of 'The rise and fall of community organisation' comic strip. Part 3 of 'The rise and fall of community organisation' comic strip. Part 4 of 'The rise and fall of community organisation' comic strip. Tweets by EthnicityUK. It seems that much of the contemporary anxiety about public art today is located precisely on these slippery borders between inside and outside, between private and public.

To place art outside the gallery is potentially threatening, but also means that the role of the artists working in the urban realm is charged. Artists whose work is concerned with their own private interests, rather than those relating primarily to the social space of the site, as an architect for example might do , are considered self indulgent and arrogant. Public Art: Between Theory and Practice Public art affords an uncomfortable relationship with academic research policies. Currently, the highest value is placed on the most private research — on those heavily footnoted articles in missing copies of refereed journals in university library stacks or on the single artists work displayed in the Tate Modern.

Although there is a current fashion for interdisciplinarity, multi-disciplinarity and collaboration, the academic institution has tended to drive a hard line between different disciplines. I argue that in order to engage with practical problems of public and private space, we must operate at a theoretical level.

In theoretical terms, critical debates concerning urban space and culture have reformulated the ways in which space is understood. There are many locations between public and private — they can be spatial, methodological, emotional — concerned with places, processes and people. In terms of place Many artists operating today are concerned with the kind of sites Michel Foucault might describe as heterotopic. Often through their emptiness, such places offer possibilities for imagining new kinds of occupation of space.

Artists seek to make work that develops out of a close relationship with the site, work which makes manifest histories previously rendered invisible or which suggests alternative ways of using the space. Henri Lefebvre draws attention to the possibility of liberation in the everyday. Lefebvre suggests that everyday places, people, processes and products offer multiple possibilities, not least for public artists.

The everyday is constituted through practices such as walking and shopping, and objects such as litter and bricks. But if the city is understood as art, when everyday urban fragments and practices already say it all, what is the role of the artist? In terms of processes In his writing, Benjamin played on the juxtaposition of sub-title and content in each of his prose pieces, using the sub-titles to bring to life private and hidden meanings in the text.

In art practice dialectical imagery can mean juxtaposing pairs of images, using text or titles to displace perceived meanings, or placing an object in a site in order to recontextualise meaning. The spatial story acts as a theoretical device which allows us to understand the urban fabric in terms of relationships between people, things and places. They locate us physically and conceptually in both space and time, allowing us to make links between otherwise disconnected elements of the city.

A series of contemporary urban art projects fascinated with notions of dispersal and narrative articulated different versions of the spatial story. In terms of people Work made through collaboration with others involves interaction of this nature, where what becomes important is no longer the qualities of particular end products but the processes of making them.

This may tend towards the choreographic, where the work is manifest less as an object and more as an event, a series of relationships people make with one another. The making and receiving of art work is an economy — a series of relationships of exchange between people. Art is not just produced by artists — it is the product of viewers, users, subjects and urban dwellers of all kinds. Some interventions choose to subvert the existing hierarchical relationship between viewer and collector, critic and curator, re-positioning the viewer in such a way that they are able to take an active role in the choosing and evaluating of art works.

The conditions described through these six writers set out spaces which are endlessly mutable, perceived more as thresholds than places. This place is neither one thing nor the other. New ideas emerge in such places. So we return to the beginning. Almost, but not quite. It is more useful to focus on the more interesting complexities offered by contested, interstitial and ephemeral spaces between public and private where differences are embraced. Compared to architecture, it has been argued that art has no use or function.

Art provides gifts of time and space, creating occasions where new mediations between public and private might yet start to be articulated. Hill, J ed. Lacy, S ed. Ryan, M. But, as Foucault says, power creates its own points of resistance Foucault, 95 and the power over memory and identity held by any dominant social group is rarely left unchallenged. Disruption may come from a rival faction or from discontented individuals. One arises from a position of personal powerlessness and the other from a position of personal power. Nevertheless the strategies, however limited or liberated by economic necessity, are strikingly similar, as, I would suggest are the motives.

Memory and Landscape Simon Schama points out that our word landscape was a sixteenth century adoption from the Dutch. This understanding of the word provides a particular insight into the ways memory and identity are controlled in our towns and cities. It may be argued that those who control memory control identity, and those who control the landscape control memory. If this is the case, then the power of naming, placing, or destroying, is crucial to the shaping 27 of the memories from which stories, histories and identities, may be constructed.

Like nations Hobsbawn, 77 , cities act out collective acts of commemoration, in which they endeavour to justify and ensure the continuity of the present status quo through narrative constructions of an appropriate past. In this form of public history, identity is agreed, or perhaps, asserted, by those economically and politically able to gain jurisdiction and thereby claim occupancy. Since the mid-nineteenth century the good burgers of Bristol have managed a similar sleight of hand through the stage management of monuments and memorials to its most favoured sons.

In the centre of Bristol, on Colston Avenue there stands a statue to the eighteenth century slave trader and politician, Edward Colston. This sculpture is part of an eruption of commemorative marks made on the landscape of Bristol during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Le Goff, 87 The plethora of nineteenth century memorials made to Edward Colston bear witness to the construction of this man as a great Bristolian philanthropist. The source of his wealth is overlooked, and what became the focus are the schools and almshouses that he set up in Bristol during the eighteenth century.

This mercantile cartel had been in existence since the sixteenth century, and indeed, still exists today. The reason for their lionisation of Colston [as I have argued in length elsewhere Morgan, ] is that in celebrating him, one of their own, they were memorialising themselves and their own 28 Morgan values. As Foucault says, where there is power, there are points of resistance Foucault and the power over memory and identity held by any dominant social group is rarely left unchallenged. Disruption may come from a rival faction or from discontented individuals, as Foucault puts it: These points of resistance are present everywhere in the power network.

Hence there is no single locus of great Refusal Since the mid-nineteen-nineties his clumsy and misspelled daubings have appeared on every available wall-space and even across footpaths. They are usually done with emulsion paint, as opposed to spray-can, and display no aesthetic qualities whatsoever. Sometimes the paint gets spilt and the traces of his panicking footprints can still be half-seen on the pavement months later.

James E. Young calls the state-sponsored monument the locus for a selfaggrandising national memory Young, Lewis operates in the same terms but on a personal and local level. An extremely interesting element in his self-acclaim is his relationship with time.

He projects himself into the future; he imagines posterity. Lewis is trying to control memory. At the height of his powers in late he had, in a way, succeeded in that project. No site is sacrosanct to Lewis the True Baron. However, Lewis was perhaps too successful in his domination of the landscape, and too persistent in his determination to have the last word.

His very success, his very power, meant that Lewis would generate opposition out of his own forms, his own strategies. Foucault, 96 Lewis had achieved his end. He had written his name on the landscape. His bid for immortality, his will to impose his identity on the urban landscape of Bristol, seems to have been unsuccessful in the long term. In the end his strategies were limited by economics, his means of domination were too fragile to withstand the resistance they created.

The Wills family, along with most of South Bristol, was non-conformist in religion and Whig Liberal in their politics. They were not eligible to study at Oxford or Cambridge, and William Henry felt this keenly.

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As a substitute for going to Oxford where he had wanted to study, he made plans to go to University College London which had been set up precisely to cater for dissenters. However illness made this impossible and he entered the family business instead. The Merchant Venturers of Bristol had a long history of discrimination against non-conformists. Now know ye further by these Presents that I the said Edward Colston do make several Orders Rules and Direction to the end that all such Children as shall be admitted to the Hospital may be educated and brought up in the true faith and belief of the Church of England and may not swerve, stray or fall off from the same.

This area across the river and outside the city boundaries, kept separate by tollgates on roads and bridges, was viewed with suspicion by the ruling classes of Bristol who saw it as a hotbed of dissenting sedition. Firstly he was a manufacturer not a merchant and thus precluded from membership other than by family connection, which he did not have. So by the end of the nineteenth century, although rich and powerful,WH Wills, like the rest of his family, was an outsider to the long established social order of Bristol.

From this point the Wills family, mostly, though not exclusively in the person of William Henry himself, along with other non-conformist manufacturers in Bedminster, such as the Frys who were Quakers, began to constitute a rival power base to the Society of Merchant Venturers in Bristol. One can only imagine the effect on the members of the Society of Merchant Venturers at the time, but it must have been a substantial affront to their dignity. It is almost and indeed altogether a religious question and especially as to the Continuance of Church and State.

McGrath, For the Merchants, to have a statue of a radical Whig Irishman erected in the heart of Bristol by a Liberal, non-conformist, Bedminster-born, industrialist must have felt like pure impertinence. So in there was a stalemate in the mnemonic landscape of Bristol.

The Baronet had made his stand, and the Merchants had responded. In the next phase of this struggle for jurisdiction the Merchants upped the ante. On the top of Brandon Hill in central Bristol, there stands to this very day an ornate, Victorian minaret. By now the Wills family were perhaps the richest in Bristol. They were at the peak of their success as tobacco importers and manufacturers of cigarettes and were rapidly expanding their business in what is now South Bristol.

The tower that was being ceremoniously dedicated to the memory of Merchant Venturer achievement in the person of John Cabot could, and still can, be seen from right across the river. At that time it would have been the highest point on the Bristol skyline, and this symbol of Conservative, Anglican, Merchant Venturer virtue would have been clearly visible from the Wills factory in nonconformist, Liberal Bedminster.

In fact, when the Cabot Memorial Tower was in the process of production, in , Wills was already involved in plans for the building of a civic art gallery, which would bear his name and stand as a memorial to himself. In the size of his donation was upped to cover the entire costs of the project.

His architect of choice was his cousin, Sir Frank Wills, and the project became a family affair. By the gallery had been built along the hill from the Cabot Memorial. This gallery was, of course, not a tower, a symbolic place of surveillance from which one may view the many and all are aware of the possibility of being watched.

Both Tony Bennett and Carol Duncan have seen Victorian and Edwardian galleries and museums as sites of social discipline where the populace may be controlled educatively: i. On the front of this building, out of all proportion to its scale, is perhaps the biggest dedication plaque I have ever seen. As non-conformists the family had experienced religious discrimination, and had felt the fact that they had been debarred from Oxford and Cambridge very sharply.

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He outmanoeuvred the Merchants decisively and economically by suddenly donating the then enormous sum of a hundred thousand pounds towards the project Watkins, Like a Cathedral it had taken years to build, and like a cathedral it powerfully dominated the city around it. The building certainly is conspicuous, where the Cabot Memorial Tower stands ft tall, the Wills Tower is It imposes itself on the city from the top of Park street, allowing you to see nothing else on the skyline as you walk up the hill, and, importantly, whereas the Cabot Memorial is most clearly seen from South Bristol, the Wills Memorial Tower dominates the cityscape of West Bristol — the territory of the Merchant Venturers.

Conclusion In marked contrast to Lewis, the economic power of the Wills family meant that their own self aggrandising marks on the landscape have lasted. We remember him only because he wills us to. Lewis wants to be part of a community of taggers who mark the territory of South Bristol with what they would claim to be artwork.

Like Lewis he contests the power of the group he may not join by marking their territory, by challenging their right to control civic memory. The other key to this activity, is, I think the pure pleasure of the act of resistance itself. The Nuba believed that women were associated with the territory inside the compound and men with the land outside.

However, Hodder observed a woman deliberately, and publicly, dumping her ash well outside the compound in the male domain. In my view these two South Bristol boys, Lewis the Baron and WH Wills the Baronet, were indulging in precisely that kind of pleasurable and knowing Foucauldian resistance when they decided to make their marks on the Bristol urban landscape. Boyer, M. Diamond, E ed. Macqueen, J. G, and Taylor, S. Morgan, S. International Journal of Heritage Studies,Volume 4, no 2. It consisted of 32 tons of small blocks of ice constructed into one large block and a half ton boulder of rock salt and measured 3 x 3 x 4m.

In their elements of opening and revealing, her works relate to the vulnerability both exposed and subverted by feminist performance artists of the s and s. Her use of organic materials which by their nature decay, melt, rot, grow and inevitably refer to themes of mortality and provoke irreversible processes of change. Her references to impermanence and her willingness to let go of the work and grant it a life and death of its own is an acceptance of loss which she steadfastly controls.

As women we are closer to ideas of corporeality in our relationship to menstruation, childbirth and blood and the works reference dirt, disorder and pollution and the feminine abject. The development of the M11, the closure of the docks and the displacement of people which the globalisation of capital inevitably produces are all part of the sense of absence which the work produces.

New technologies and communication systems have replaced steam power as the primary energy of capitalism. Where once the curtains in the theatres of the West End were raised and lowered from here, now the pipes used to channel that energy are housing optic cables. The otherwise disused space evokes a sense of absence: of the work carried out there, long abandoned and of the impending absence of the work itself in its imperceptible dissolution. All contribute to the association of meanings with the space in a collaboration between artist, artwork, viewer and site.

They are perhaps no longer works, recalled only in the memory of those who have seen or witnessed them, or as colour documentary photographs. In its beauty, it is an object of desire radiating light, but time corrodes its status as an object, ultimately forbidding it. In the cultural construction of death, death is absence, loss, invisibility. In their timely disintegration they hang imperceptibly between the visible and the invisible, between there and not there, the desired object is destroyed, denying possession, stabilising desire which is at the same time sustained by loss in its link with unobtainability.

Both it and Forest Floor in its atmosphere of abandonment ultimately are as if they have never been. The site itself subsequently becomes the object — embodying memory and evoking absence. Ice both suggests the preservation of the body and the dissolution of the body after death and the work is inscribed with bodily characteristics. The boiler room can also be seen as a representation of the body in its containment of the work: it is the receptacle of which the work is both the surface and the contained.

The pitted and marked surfaces of the work inscribe it with bodily associations and associate it with the body as a site of struggle against decay, disease and ageing. In Kleinian theory see Mitchell, , aggression arises from the fear of the loss of the loved objects. The work performs an Regeneration or Reparartion 45 excretion of itself, and its waste products are in turn part of its destructive process.

In this sense the work is part of a group of contemporary feminist artworks which investigate the body and its relationship to the Kleinian death drive. Notions of stability are linked to both an anxiety about death and the desire for death in order to create stability. Repetition can be seen as the search for the lost object and Anya Gallaccio is interested in repetition; it is an aspect of her work.

The familiar is re-enacted in the unfamiliar site, becoming a temporary triumph over death. The urge to return to the inanimate state, to the beginning, is conversely an attitude against change and difference. In repeating works Gallaccio recreates loss and re-presents absence: the game of loss is repeated over and over again. Anxiety that the loved object will be destroyed is co-existent and competes with the desire to control and triumph over it. Loss is suffered through aggression but through repetition is also potentially recoverable.

Over time, the work becomes overgrown and hidden by its environment. Forest Floor seems to embody a blurring of the real and imagined, making it like a shrine to a work rather than a work. The carpet, in smothering the organic, is rendering it powerless, blotted out and repressed, it kills it. It seems to be asserting that death is irrevocable and there can be no return of the natural; it enacts the triumph of the banal over the exquisite.

It appears to be illusory but in actuality it underlines difference. The work in becoming overgrown in time reverses this, re-creating a sense of death and decay by its living material: seemingly to signify death like an abandoned grave. It utilises both similarity and difference; resemblance to nature disguises the animate from the inanimate but in its approximation of the familiar and the unfamiliar it masks death by the substitute of the organic with the inorganic.

Whilst housework evoked by the carpet is a defence against dirt, Forest Floor inevitably returns to chaos. Eventually time separates the order of Forest Floor from that which threatens its stability the forest itself. It symbolises both danger and power. The work suggests that all things in life are ultimately acculturalised so that all life is eventually effaced.

Death is at the same time, always culturally constructed and metaphorical — it is outside of human experience and can only be represented. According to Freud, loss is associated with castration anxiety and injury to the ego, and death is a castrative threat to life. The Kristeva Reader, Oxford: Blackwell. Lingwood, J ed. This is of course an old question, so I will not start with its history, except to make reference to institutional invention. Before I am misunderstood, I should explain this statement. Writing as a technology is a prosthesis of analysis: it augments the analytical powers of human thought tremendously.

The dialogue form invented as the institutional practice for his school was the vehicle for dialectic, the seed from which the mighty oak of science eventually grew. The point of this history is that university disciplines are part of the apparatus of literacy, relative to it, and not absolute.

The perfection of literacy in print produced an information explosion that schooling never has responded to completely. Ulmer If we study the contemporary city, a number of logics appear which function as institutions. The circulation of information, of ideas and values across the different logics has the capacity to transform them. The important aspect here is that these logics are determined by different points of view. A number of dependences between the points of view become visible in the process. On the other hand, they allow the consideration of the consequences of any strategic proposals for urban development in a kind of ecology of the city.

I would introduce next my translation from the introduction that Bruno Latour and Emilie Hermant wrote in Paris, ville invisible. Fragmented, fractured, destructured, atomised, anomic :adj. The only thing left would be to cling to the last traces of the old world, to the museums of the social: little cafes, small shops, narrow streets, little people. Enough to be suffocated alive. Leibniz, Let us attempt an approach to the public realm through the fragments Latour mentions, the simple substances, or the universes of Leibniz.

The implication has been known and used in differential and integral calculus for a long time. A reference for the image of the city of fragments is the work of Aldo Rossi, in particular two buildings, one in Tokyo, the other in Paris Attali, The Tokyo building, a hotel, was referred to by Rem Koolhaas as an example of the operative power of difference. Only Rossi, an Italian, could design such a building, and it is only the Japanese who could build it.

The second example, an appartment block in Paris at La Villette has two notable characteristics: it is located at the back of a block, and sports a large cornice. Fragments of the city, fragments of building. Looking at the drawings of Rossi, these fragments offer a critique for the question of context and the arguments of continuity and time 54 Kenley and space. How then does Rossi understand the fragments if not as an archeological restitution of the coherent body of the city? All one has to do, to imagine this, to understand the city of Rossi, is to refer to a painting of the deposition, and the representation therein of the body of Christ: the context and the object Rossi, No Beautiful Images The proposed law for urban renewal and solidarity in France is similar to the dynamic of urban regeneration existing in the UK.

The scale is one of proximity, of neighbourhoods, of quarters of the city. The level of intervention, of stimulation has national ambitions and means.

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The question of relations between the different powers quickly becomes primordial: the Ministries represented in the commission led by the Min. The evidence of public space is in its use. No beautiful images, only paths; no picturesque narratives, only theory. Theory here makes reference to the etymological dictionary: processions of ambassadors going to consult the oracles. This is evaluated in the actual urban situation where the questions pertaining to the public space and realm are formulated.

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The evaluation takes place through direct negotiation with the actors of the initiatives of urban regeneration or renewal depending on which side of the Channel you are Tracing Gazes: Three Aspects of Paris 55 A Methodology of Tracing I am proposing the above as a methodology which can engage the multiple points of view and the logics they determine, in a framework of public space — public action. And now for the gaze. This approach will replace the panoptic with the oligoptic, as a way to look at traces as they happen, along a predetermined route. A projection of the world on to the world we are studying, at that particular time.

At breakfast,an American couple, him a sociologist, her a photographer. Lovers engrossed in their conversation, the academician reading his paper, the waiters One could say, they are ordinary persons of individual character. On the other hand, they are more like targets for a whole lot of arrows, just like St. But she will not only be the registering target of all the signals; she will also send some back,with a smile,a gaze,a call.

The interchanges make up a star shape or even a mesh, a network activated in all directions by all the possibilities. There is no more Element as there is an Ensemble, a provisional network which could be recorded via its traces. Each part is as large as the whole, which in turn is as small as any odd part. It is an uneven, holey net. Its institutional logic unfolds in a predictable way.

There are no differences, the tourists seem to say. The details, the proximity of description make the public realm visible. The place where it unfolds, continuously leaving the traces of the gaze which may or may not meet another gaze, or just gaze upon a stranger, has the character of public space. When Proust was meeting people socially, with someone new, he would ask them what do they do? Where do they work? In ensuing conversation, he would always ask for more details. It is through the details, through the exhausting of all possibilities of looking at the object in the discussion, that the story could take shape, told from all possible points of view.

A public space is then made of available details, a great many of them. The public realm renders them possible. They describe different levels of order, from institutions of public order to customary behaviour in an anthropological sense. These positions, acting as guides, catalysts, and facilitators are reserved for the local, jobless people. They have to prove their initiative in the voluntary service, belonging to associations that work in the social direction and so on.

This depends on the regulated relationships that exist between the observed elements objects, actors and made manifest through their expression. There is no doubt a conspiracy between the public realm and its public spaces. The challenge is to recognise this as it requires updating. Leibniz, G. Ulmer, G, Unpublished correspondence with the author. It is not a question of mapping past avant-gardes onto today, not because there is nothing to be learned from history, nor even because past avant-gardes failed to deliver a new society, but because history is change. What is understood from past conditions may lead to insights into those present or future conditions most likely to bring about a particular direction of change; but present realities also require understanding if strategies are to be effective.

The circumstances in which an avant-garde might act today include economic factors such as globalisation, and cultural frameworks such as post-colonialism. Meanwhile, private development encroaches on public space, and in a world in which there is only one economic system, the operations of capital are set on processing the Earth into dust. The view may seem bleak, but within the dominant society are cracks in which other realities take shape.

This essay considers one such case: the Nine Mile Run Greenway project in Pittsburgh, which aims to transform a site of industrial waste into a zone of public space and bio-diversity, linking the agendas of democracy and environmentalism. Using participatory processes, the project seeks a negotiated space of change in which an urban future can be shaped through the collaboration of city authorities, developers, environmentalists, water engineers, agronomists, artists and citizens.

The essay begins with the context of post-industrial cities, describes the project, then attempts to say why it might be of interest. New Cities — The Post-Industrial The planned city of the eighteenth century, such as Washington DC, was set out as a series of spaces for circulation and display. Through planning, cities are conceived, then physically constructed, separating concept and building in a new way.

Whilst the mediaeval city grew organically, its streets the gaps between buildings, the new city appears as a design in space, its squares and avenues set out rationally, as if on a tabula rasa. Descartes refers, at the end of the passage, to an engineer architect drawing regular places from his free imagining. The planned city, then, begins when an imagined hand traces rectangles in the sand.

In The Mall, citizens could move freely in the open air, breathing freely being a metaphor, for Thomas Jefferson, for political freedom Sennett, Yet cities are the most regulated of all spaces, produced through processes of planning and design under political and economic control. Today, urban development is complex, comprising at least three layers represented by the global city, the cultural quarter, and globalisation as a pervasive condition of both.

Canary Wharf and Battery Park City are cases. The Bay was enclosed by a barrage to provide developers with vistas of still water, depriving wading birds of a habitat and, in a kind of poetic justice, creating an ecological imbalance which means the barrier now has to be regularly opened to prevent the smell of stagnant waters wafting into the apartments of the new rich. Waterfront vistas, however, are one of the hallmarks of enclaved development.

The Tate at Albert Dock, Liverpool, was a forerunner, again beside a waterfront, though separated from the city by a four-lane highway. Although this kind of development, as cultural policy, characterises the s, the earlier case of SoHo in New York, discussed by Sharon Zukin , demonstrates the impact of culture on real estate. Waterfront development and the cultural quarter, then, are signs for the postindustrial city. But the diverse publics of a city do not have equal access to the image of abundance.

Rosalyn Deutsche, like Zukin, writes of the divisiveness of urban development in New York and its link to a rising rate of eviction Deutsche, a; b. So the rich get richer looking out on their vistas and enjoying the impression of power such distances lend, while the poor are deprived of visibility. Bauman, 9 For Bauman, one of the functions of the state now erased is that of maintaining an equilibrium between the growth rates of productivity and consumption; this stands for a wider erasure of intervention to retain stability in the economy for the well-being of citizens of all classes.

Faced with the volatility of markets and ease with which production can be switched from one place to another, there is, it seems, little governments can do to protect the interests of their subjects against those of the directors and shareholders of trans-national corporations and privatised utilities. The economic increasingly takes the place of the political, as some trans-national companies have larger budgets than the smaller European states. But if the state intervenes only marginally, what possibility is there for intervention through art? To approach the question, it is necessary to move beyond a simple cause and effect model.

He summarises his position as: What this means is agency. It is precisely the human capacity to imagine and seek to construct a future which is so crucial to understanding the potential of trajectories within a complex world. Instead,a participatory democracy has the capacity for collective realisation of urban Byrne, 67 For artists, or for a re-politicised avant-garde if there is one , this offers a strategy for intervention through, for instance, the creation of transparency in the urban process.

Engagement means working in the crevices of the dominant city, understanding the re-coding which characterises the post-industrial urban landscape, and subverting it from within. Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, set in the rust-belt, is not a glamorous city. The city has three major universities — Carnegie Mellon, Pittsburgh and Duquesne — and a growing cultural infra-structure which includes the Warhol Museum and the Mattress Factory, in redundant commercial and industrial buildings, respectively.

Parts of its waterside have been reclaimed for jogging and cycling trails, one of which will reach to Washington. Its population is declining, as graduates move elsewhere, and much of its strategy for a new identity is aimed at reversing this through construction of a knowledge-based economy and an attractive environment.

The site is now rezoned for housing, subject to a planning partnership between the city authorities and 62 Miles Pittsburgh: part of a parade of dogwalkers passing a demolition site — photo: Malcolm Miles the private sector through an Urban Redevelopment Agency. Since , a team based at the Studio for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University, a research centre attached to the Fine Arts School, have worked with the city, environmental experts, citizens and the developers in an effort to reserve around a third of the site — the Greenway — as a zone of public space and bio-diversity, which they term a post-industrial landscape.

The team — artists Tim Collins, Reiko Goto, Bob Bingham and Richard Pell, and lawyer John Stevens — see their role as facilitators, bringing together groups and individuals who may have widely differing interests and agendas, ensuring that all parties have equal access to information, using walking tours to draw attention to the remaining bio-diversity of the valley, and one- and two-day workshops to go beyond confrontation to a working through of problems and possibilities.

They state their strategy, which owes much to Habermas, as: Our process is based on the philosophy and ideals of democratic empowerment through discourse. We have learned to leave our decisions in the hands of experts, yet at the same time we have learned to mistrust those experts depending on who is paying for their opinion. We need to reclaim our relationship to complex public issues. Simony, Brodt and Pryor, 6 Vistas of the Post — Industrial City 63 Pittsburgh — Nine Mile Run Greenway project, the trailer on site — photo: Malcolm Miles The project has no predetermined plan for the site, though it seeks to create through broad participation a design which can be implemented by the city, the developers and other professionals in due course.

One specialist input made by the artists is in visualizing ideas which emerge from the workshops, using digital image technologies. The slag mounds are arid, not especially toxic but highly porous, so that vegetation grows only in pockets where other debris, such as rubble from house demolition, has been deposited. In public perception the site is a dump for old tyres and televisions.

To give a greener aspect, some of the steep slopes have been sprayed with a mulch containing oat and other grass seeds. The proposed re-development for green public space is not natural, in that to return the site to its pre-slag condition would mean relocating 17 million cubic yards of material, causing environmental destruction elsewhere; like all managed land, the post-industrial landscape will emerge from a series of interventions within a set of conditions.

This offers opportunities for public participation, and a trailer parked 64 Miles where a road crosses the valley acts as a focal point for meetings, walks and planting sessions, and a store for tools. Assumptions that the site was beyond salvage have been shown to be wrong, and an education programme in schools has drawn attention to the causes of pollution. Nine Mile Run is contextualised by the complex and interlinked issues of community, democracy and sustainability; and the relation of local initiatives to the process of globalisation. In brief, the project demonstrates that participatory democracy has a capacity to realise collectively imagined futures.

But the problem remains as to how notions of community are reconstructed in cities when groups of people are no longer linked by common roots to geographical site. Leonie Sandercock sees narratives of community as in any case nostalgic, arguing that: In the light of processes of globalization Celebration is totalitarian in its regulation of design and hence styles of living, down to details such as the colour of curtains and type of shrubbery. But does this mean that people no longer share concerns?

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Or, that, as Byrne argues, agency is still possible in complexity? Unlike the community architects and community arts groups of the s, for whom neighbourhoods and their supposed communities provided a kind of art — or architecture — zoo, the Nine Mile Run Greenway project begins from diversity. In part it learns from a pre-history in the politicised happenings of the late s, and, like them, Vistas of the Post — Industrial City 65 refuses the convention of the art object and with it the sculpture trail.

The work is the social process, for which visual material is a tool, made available for conviviality. One response to the question begins in a consideration of publicity, as the space of visibility in society, where people meet and contend. Thresholds and Boundaries Cities have always been sites of boundary.

From the earliest settlements in Anatolia, around 10, years ago, the city has stood distinct from the surrounding land. Henri Lefebvre sees new economic conditions in Tuscany in the thirteenth century as the ground for a new form of perception imaged in linear perspective, and a new form of spatial production, as perspectival order is projected onto reality, translated from description to prescription in the design of buildings, arcades and open squares.

This adds internal boundaries to that of the city wall. He is careful to point out that the cerebral does not, for villagers and townspeople, drive out, but does dominate, the sensual mode of spatial apprehension Lefebvre, Perspective, like rationality, can be seen in two ways. Yet who, historically, are the citizens?


In Athens it was around one in ten; in late eighteenth century England one in eight of the male population. Today, only half the electorate in the USA vote in presidential elections, and the inhabitants of ghettoised neighbourhoods feel no common ground with the residents of gated apartments. Today, cultural boundaries exclude minorities, on grounds of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation and disability, from visibility in the public realm, a realm which Doreen Massey argues is a space for men both actually and in cultural representation Massey, But such divisions simply extend the boundedness of cities since the Enlightenment.

City planning has tended to be a matter of zoning, and zones, until recent moves to re-integrate inner city areas as spaces of dwelling, work and leisure, tend to be mono-functional as well as gendered. Culture, on one hand, enforces 66 Miles boundaries through stereotypes of family and citizen; and on the other, with television, merges the public and private when world news is instantly transmitted into the domestic sitting room. Similarly, the art market is adept at subsuming to its purposes any deviant art.

Freedom, then, might entail a re-statement of difference. Reality, then, is produced in plurality, and a sense of the real through willing exposure to difference. Where is difference produced, when production implies a cultural and social construction? Not in perspective drawing, which, along with the conventions of cartography and city planning, homogenises space. Not in the marketing of consumerist lifestyles in which the world, in an extension of Cartesian representation, is reduced to a quite small set of brands and their logos. But perhaps difference and its counterpart of publicity is produced in the processes used by the Nine Mile Run Greenway project, and perhaps it is at this micro-level of the local that resistance to globalisation not only begins but is at all possible.

But it may equally matter as a demonstration that a social process, in which diverse publics and interests are able to negotiate possibilities, partakes of dreams of a world which is better, but is not a dream. Art in the Post-Industrial City To sum up: the idealism consequent on rationality, by virtue of its distancing from a world reduced, in Cartesian space, to its representation in signs, has not delivered freedom.

Its harvest is bitter, as a false homogeneity produces fragmentation whilst suppressing diversity. So Los Angeles burns, but the story is not all of war. It is also of the right to the city as a site of excitement and conviviality for women and people of colour Wilson, and of the need to reclaim the urban as a location for the production of Vistas of the Post — Industrial City 67 space by dwellers. This space will be sensual as well as rational, and, unless the Earth is to be processed into dust, it needs to be sustainable.

The implication of sustainability is mutability, to be prepared to let go of the brittle imagery of utopia and embrace the imperfections which are imperfect only as the other of perfection of a critically perceived and complex reality. Agency, as Byrne argues, remains possible. But, as Laclau argues, it does not produce anything so simple as freedom, more what he terms a negotiated zone between freedom and unfreedom Laclau, In the postindustrial city, with its global culture of surfaces, the cracks are more evident; these, where contradictions become apparent, are spaces for intervention, through the creation of transparency — exposure, access to information, participation in determination — and through giving form to possible futures.

Laclau, E Emancipation s , London:Verso. Reality could be designed by means of architecture and urban planning. Man would be in a position to realise utopian ideas, particularly through large-scale housing projects like the Bijlmer area of Amsterdam. Architecture, however, does not determine just the behaviour of inhabitants. Inhabitants in their turn determine the function and meaning of architecture. City of the Future The enormous growth of cities during the period of industrialisation had given rise to an uncontrollable urban chaos at the beginning of the twentieth century.

As a reaction to this, functionalist plans were developed which concentrated on the quality of life, the planned ordering of the environment and the combining of social interests. Only in the s and s could an actual start be made with the construction of functional housing estates on a large scale. These neighbourhoods in the That is to say, they usually consist of pre-fabricated tower blocks and are intended as housing — with a lot of light and fresh air — for people who wanting to move out of the inner city renovation areas and for middle-income households looking for a modern lifestyle with family-sized housing, balanced facilities and social equality.

Hulsbergen, 86 A radical example of such a functional district is the Bijlmer in Amsterdam. The Bijlmer is characterised by large-scale, communal housing complexes connected to each other by footbridges and interior walkways. The buildings form enormous sculptures in a park landscape, with different levels of infrastructure. In the new urban environment Berman, Where there is a lot of life there is also a richness to experience.

There is a continuous stream of varying impulses that ensure that vision is activated. This creates new associations, new ideas, new plans, new strategies. Hulsbergen, The Bijlmer was built according to rationalist principles, as a city of the future. The problem is that, as an idealistic project, the Bijlmer has not produced what people had hoped it would. Reference is often made, explicitly or not, to East European cities, where systematic planning was implemented in a radical way.

There is even a certain beauty in these vast landscapes of seemingly chaotic residential buildings, especially as many of the negative side-effects of their European equivalents are completely lacking.

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There seems to be no question of ghetto-forming and the segregation that goes with it. Goldhoorn, 33 Goldhoorn goes on to observe that these areas are more lively than similar areas in Western Europe. His observations are important when one considers the magnitude of the number of systematically built houses in the vast suburbs of Soviet cities.

What is more, these quarters were constructed across the entire Soviet Union, in regions with diverse cultural backgrounds. A major contrast exists between the homogeneity of the standard architecture and the cultural diversity of the various former Soviet republics. This contrast is overcome by the inhabitants themselves.

The situation in Armenia is a striking example of this. This, however, offers no solution to the problems of the Bijlmer, such as unemployment, vandalism, crime, lack of occupancy and rapid rates of moving on. With the envisaged corrections such runaway ambitions are pruned away in the hope that the Bijlmermeer can be slotted into the mainstream of Dutch public housing and urbanism after all, consisting as this does of developments in a well-considered mix of high-, lowand mid-rise architecture, spread over the public and private housing sectors.

Reijndorp, 62 What is surprising in the discussion about the Bijlmer is the general lack of insight. Statements are often made on the basis of limited and one-sided research. The problems go further than just the architecture. A large number of factors are of a socio-cultural nature. While in the s it was thought that architects could design society, there is still a belief today that social problems can be solved by means of architecture, so that exactly what is labelled the big mistake is being repeated.

It is often apparent that when there is no change in the future perspectives of inhabitants then renovation does little and at the most only helps temporarily, as Jan Willem Duyvendak recently made clear in de Volkskrant Duyvendak, The origins of social problems are hardly ever of an architectural nature, and architecture offers virtually no solutions to social problems.

Architecture is certainly important when it comes to consolidating Kidnapping the Bijlmer 73 the social situation: it gives a society structure and concrete form. But architecture exists on a latent level: it facilitates, accommodates and conserves. The restructuring of the Bijlmer is not so much about the improvement of the neighbourhood as about big money.

These are powerful forces — hundreds of millions in subsidies are involved. Velzen, 38 Arnold Reijndorp worked out in Archis that for the renovation of the Bijlmer there are million guilders available for spatial interventions and 26 million for socioeconomic development Reijndorp, The government is spending 10, guilders per head of the Bijlmer population. This is in stark contrast to the often very limited incomes of families living in the Bijlmer. Indeed, Remkes even sees it as an ideal model for the demolition of similar neighbourhoods throughout the Netherlands.

Remkes literally wants to turn the underprivileged out into the street, demolish their homes and build expensive houses for the rich in their place. It is sad how short-sighted even the secretary of state can be. Not that such an approach would help the present inhabitants of the Bijlmer very much. The examples only offer an extra perspective in order to look at the possibilities of the already existing architecture.

Hulsman, The Bijlmer may or may not be seen as a total failure, but the fact is that the Bijlmer was built according to a clear vision: a city for the future. Whether one agrees with this vision, and whether this vision is outdated, is another story.

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  • The current restructuring plans testify in any case to no vision at all. The only thing that is currently being proposed is demolition and the 74 Paalman construction of nondescript low-rise buildings.