Hello All. I hope you had a good summer. Here’s September’s contribution to psychogeography related news. I apologies for it being a bit thin on the ground this month (for want of a better psychogeography pun). Thanks, Tina
Psychogeography and Walking
The RIBA Journal recently had an article about psychogeography feature in it: ‘Psychogeography allows us to explore the sensory city’ by Tszwai So. If you haven’t come across it before, the Walk Listen Create website advertises lots of events around the world. Also, see Andy Howlett's Paradise Lost event on 26th September: cinema screening and Q&A.
There’s a lovely map from Stockport’s Gigantic Leap Frog Art Trail - available here - which took place in July. The International Conference of Cartography and Map Design is taking place on September 27 and 28 in Turkey: you can find out all about it here.
This article in The Guardian looks at, would you believe, mafia architecture (who knew that was a thing). And, finally, this interesting and lengthy Archinect article (including some good images form the book), looks at Reyner Banham’s book Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies.
1 place /plays/ n 1a physical environment; a space 1b physical surroundings; atmosphere 2a an indefinite region or expanse; an area…4 a particular part of a surface or body; a spot…5b an important or valued position…7a a proper or designated niche…8a an available seat…8c PLACE SETTING
2 place vt 1 to distribute in an orderly manner; arrange 2a to put in, direct to, or assign to a particular place…2c to put in a particular state 3 to appoint to a position…5a to assign to a position in a series or category; rank 7 to put, lay…
3 setting /’seting/ n 1 the manner, position, or direction in which something (e.g. a dial) is set 3a the background, surroundings…5 PLACE SETTING
Hello Folks. Here is my take on psychogeography, and related, news for August. I hope there is something of interest for everyone. Tina
Psychogeography and Walking
This The Guardian article is about an art trail along the coast of Suffolk and Essex (you do need an account to access it though: ‘I will walk 500 miles…’. And a final reminder of 4WCOP – The Fourth World Congress of Psychogeography – which begins on September 3rd: click here for all the details (and maybe I will see you there).
Here is an academic research centre (CAMRI) that takes a look at the artist Cezanne as cartographer, providing a precis of Geographies of the Imagination by Doug Specht. This Wallpaper article is about the new addition to Blue Crow Media’s Modernist maps: a Modern Map of Prague. I would highly recommend their maps. I have the Brutalist London Map (please note, I am not getting paid to advertise this).
Heart Health is a The Conversation article that takes a look at cities in regard to longevity. And this New Yorker article I found after watching a BBC programme about a really interesting artist (Philip Ashforth Coppola) in New York who is trying to preserve the memory of the original subway art-based architecture of the network before it gets destroyed (I am unable to find the BBC link online, but I saw it on the BBC news channel on 31st July). And, this The Guardian article is about a hidden London tram line which has just been reopened (as a museum) to the public at Kingsway.
In The Conversation you can find an article on some unconventional ways to travel if you can’t go away this summer. It includes micro-domestic travel, virtual reality and (believe it or not) psychogeography!
ArchitectureAnd finally, an article in The Guardian about architecture and “modernist myopia”. This article includes discussions on Liverpool, Glasgow, London and Edinburgh.
Hello psychogeography lovers. I came across a lot of related news in the last month, so will continue to post the links with a brief description under a respective heading. I hope you find the newsletter interesting. More in August…
Psychogeography and Walking
It seems that Nick Cave (yes, he of Bad Seeds fame) has unintentionally been doing some psychogeography. You can read about him photographing lost gloves on his walks in The Guardian. Here’s another The Guardian articles on walking the Limestone Way of the Peak District. And, here, another piece of accidental psychogeography which includes interesting photos of bricked up windows in London, from the BBC website. Whereas this Youtuber is doing some ‘proper’ psychogeography by walking the most direct route on his “straight line mission” across Scotland (from The Guardian). The final two articles under this section look at ‘well-being’ and walking: one on walking with friends in The Guardian, and the other is research on mental health and hiking from The Conversation.
Yanko Design has an interesting article which includes some lovely futuristic images of imagined spaces looking at green skyscrapers, while The Spaces has an alternative architectural guide to Venice. Here is a guide to the 2021 London Festival of Architecture in The Wallpaper and I am including this really useful link to all things Charles Jencks, as it has loads of useful resources on his work.
The Conversation has an article on the queer city and inclusivity and The Science Museum Group Journal has a brilliant journal article on science and the city, which seems to be open access. Here’s a The Guardian article about the pedestrianisation of Oxford Circus in London. And, on a more light-hearted note, here is a link to a novel entitled The Cat and the City by Nick Bradley (I am a big fan of both). Finally, under cities, this super 20 min film called ‘Organism’ by Hilary Harris (1975) from the Aeon website, shows “the city as an emergent form, with architecture as the skeleton and roads as the veins”.
The Weird or Random
On the more random side of all things spatial: bleak spaces that you come to love (this The Guardian article requires you to already to be a signed up member, although it is free). And, I will finish this blog on a bit of bonkerity: this chappy accidentally annexed France by moving some rock (from The Conversation).
Here’s June’s psychogeography-related news. I hope there is something of interest for you here. Thanks for reading.
The Fourth World Congress of Psychogeography is convening again in September, please click here for the up-to-date info (I apologise for missing the call date). Here’s a 2020 article in FAD Magazine about the Greek-American artist Gerasimos Floratos and his psychogeographical renderings exhibited at that time. And this BBC article looks at the art of ‘drain spotting’.
This super online resource, from Stanford Libraries in the US, is about working with historical maps online. It includes geo-referencing, overlaying and exporting and comes in the form of a tutorial.
The Biennale Architecttura 2021 is now on. Here’s the official website. It’s on till November 2021 in Venice. I appreciate we can’t necessarily travel, but there looks like lots of useful links on there, and there may be online talks. This article in ArchDaily looks at the threat of demolition in regard to the brutalist Nagakin Capsule Tower in Tokyo. And, this website looks at 3D printed architecture.
This is an interesting article in The Conversation about a farmer who moved a rock and accidentally changed a national border. And, finally, in The Guardian there is an article about some sewage works in Edinburgh: it's about exploring local spaces during lockdown.
This month in architecture we have a discussion in Domus on Brutalism and post-punk, a connection I wouldn’t have made myself, even though I am a fan of both. There is some more news on Modernist architecture in The Guardian on the post-war architecture of Derby’s Assembly Rooms (and the hope to save them from the bulldozers), and another general discussion on Brutalist architecture which includes useful links to other sources.
Images and Films
The Guardian has an article on somebody who (probably doesn’t even realise he is a psychogeographer) and photographs social distancing signs. This artists fills potholes and manhole covers in beautiful mosaics and this photographer takes images of America by streetlight. The last one in this section is a super 3 min film of an urban commute by Hiroshi Kondo.
Walking and Psychogeography
Outside of the UK
After a hiatus of a few years, I have decided to attempt to resurrect the psychogeography news for this blog. I used to do it monthly, prior to that I did it via a mailing list. Anyway, it seems like I stopped it in November 2016, so that’s over 4 years! Anyway, I am going to give it another go. The news will contain anything related to: walking, the city, urban space, landscape, public art, architecture, space-related activism, and so on – so whatever loosely comes under the rubric of ‘psychogeography’. I hope you find it interesting:
The Guardian: A joyless trudge? No, thanks: why I am utterly sick of ‘going for a walk’
An entertainingly cynical, article by a Canadian living in the UK during lockdown. It covers anything from dodgy footwear to Margaret Thatcher. Click here for full article.
The Claude Glass Revolutionized the Way People Saw Landscape
This is a really interesting academic, short, article about how a little mirror, named after the landscape artist Claude Lorrain, changed the way people viewed the landscape. For those Situationists amongst you, Lorrain was of interest to them due to his depictions of ruins (“the charms of the ruins”). The Situationists had a problem with the nostalgia engendered by images of ruins (and ruins themselves) and actually used one of Lorrain’s paintings in one of their maps. Click here for the article.
The Guardian: Is that a unicorn? No it’s a teenager taking a hike in the great outdoors.
This is about the Ramblers attempts to get young people out and about (and bumbling) in Britain’s wide open spaces. Includes some research and stats, for those who are interested in that kind of thing. Full article here.
Revisiting the Concrete Architecture of Belgian Icon Juliaan Lampens
I’m a big fan of brutalist architecture (and even included a large section on the work of Chamberlin, Powell and Bon in my thesis). I’m not an expert, though, and hadn’t heard of this chappy. An interesting article, with some nice images, here in The Wallpaper.
French Artist Unveils New Optical Illusion Installation in Italy
This uncanny installation appears on the façade of the Pallazo Strozzi in Florence. It’s really fabulous and must be super to see in person. It reminds me of the opening to Civilization and its Discontents where Freud talks about how memory, and the unconscious, has the effect of forgetting. Freud uses a beautiful analogy of the ancient city of Rome to help him explain how the unconscious works (click here if you’d like to read my take on that). Click here for some images of the installation.
Building a Feminist City
This editorial, discussing the current focus on women’s safety in public space following Sarah Everard’s death, takes its starting point as Haussmann’s Paris (very Situationist). Click here to read the article in The Guardian.
Mouse Hole Update
A Really cute one to finish on. This from a blog entitled ‘Walks Between the Commons: American mom living in London’. It’s about a little mouse hole installation that local people decorate and offer gifts up to the pretend mice that live there, such as Christmas cards. It’s, basically, a sweet little bit of guerrilla urban creativity. Click here for the images.