Friday, November 09, 2012

Illuminating Väsby

 In the ongoing Vasby Labs experiment, where we are testing ideas on how development can occur with the participation of the community, we began with workshops held in the areas' shopping mall.
after a series of these public workshops, we began identifying the project as a series of questions, interspersed with temporary public installations, which would measure and test the participation of the public. In the summer and early fall sessions, 
these included a pop-up grocery store, 
a temporary urban lab,
 a propaganda stand, a cafe and a carousel for kids.

 As darkness becomes a larger part of the day, we slowly begin to illuminate the area of Torget

Illuminations happens on two levels
one is a set of mobile street lights and lit objects, 
that will brighten the area during the dark winter months

Parallel to the light objects, a series of signs introduce and advertise a questionaire 
on the ways that the city can develop.
a set of string lights suggest a celebration or gathering. Benches are there to sit, and a sign asks whether people prefer public or private parks. These are perhaps questions with multiple answers, because privatising public space leads to better development but also more control on the part of investors. 

(invitation to the switching-on of Lights, on Monday 12th of November 2012)

So the questions are there simply to introduce the subject, 
and to make sure that decisions are well thought through.

later on, an ice-skating rink will operate with free entrance for the citizens of Vasby. 
The area of Torget, which we are illuminating, is in fact a construction site, that we are temporarily using to test urban planing ideas before construction begins,

the time before construction is traditionally spent inside boardrooms and municipal offices high above the city

instead, we are placing the discussion 
on the site where its results
will materialize.

Project Manager: Mia Lundstrom
Construction: Patrik Olin for
Graphic identity: Petter Johanson
Newspaper: Jan Aman, Petter Johanson, Anton Wigbrand
Design: Andreas Angelidakis
Images: Sotiris Vasiliou, Alexandra Syriou

The End of Design

Recently I've been teaching a class on "The End of Design"
or how design practices are affected by our copy-paste+google-search mentality.
The class is based on a series of reading that trace the shift from old school capitalism 
i.e. Modernism
We started by looking into the state of objects in a desire driven landscape
and move to the post modern condition and how it affects the citizen

 but then comes the internet, and slowly becomes the simulation of the simulation
some tiny books are there as a historical re-think
Tom Holerts' excellent proposal for alternatives to current production modes
Social public space as opposed to consumer driven public space

a precise reading on how we shifted from the modern to the postmodern to the now
with some questions on modernity and identity along the way
an interview with Denise Scott Brown, just to re-trace postmodernism back to where it began and where it made sense
a study on the idea of crisis and resuscitation as a contemporary capitalist system (Crisis capitalism? Copy Capitalism?)
more questioning of how cultural production actually works

and yet some more words from DSB. And all along trying to pin down the class subject with a continuously updated set of questions

 full texts here TheEndOfDesign 

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Chronology of Gold

In the summer of 2007, on commission from Casa Vogue, I began researching the life of legendary gallerist Alexander Iolas, and his amazing Villa in the suburb of Agia Paraskevi.

the house was a surreal mix of contemporary art with moder with surrealism with minimalism with antiquities, baroque, fashion, furs, paraphernalia and eccentricities

as a conclusion to the Iolas research, I decided to sneak into the villa
, only to find a golden ruin

ripped gold wallpaper everywhere
gold stair leading nowhere
gold bathrooms

After the forensic photos of the ruined villa, one of the first things I made was a golden ghost of a chair, a frame wrapped in the gold wallpaper Iolas used throughout the villa, 2008
with some leftover fur and marble.
 As if the ghost of Alexander, famous also for his enormous fur coat collection, 2008

suddenly got up and left, 2008

gold became one of the basic vocabularies for a lot of work, 2008

randomly discarded furniture could be brought back to life 
when wrapped in gold, 2008
these were part of both the artistic production but of the everyday life,
as our house became more and more gold 2009

"All the rooms in Villa Iolas arranged as pile of garbage or gold" 2009

parallel, we continued work on the Iolas project,
imagining the destiny of the house as inhabited by Iolas' ghost. 
A ghost that kept piling up rooms to afford space for the ever growing accumulation of imaginary works

more gold wrapped objects kept appearing 2008


big trash 2008
friends were getting married so we made burkinis, 2012

scarfs (bibs?)
 for toasting with the locals


 witness mask profile pic
chapel and golden kiss

after the golden wedding, we continued with the Iolas project
 flipping through the repertory of solutions
preparing to enter the villa through the screen
(short film trailer coming soon)