Friday, 30 January 2009

Place and Space

I'm currently reading a book by Nick Kaye, site-specific art (performance, place and documentation), after last week's session I thought that some of the following quotes might be of interest. Each statement makes me consider place and space in a slightly different way:

The moving about that the city multiples and concentrates makes the city itself an immense social experience of lacking a place [ . . . ] The identity furnished by this place is all the more symbolic (named) because, in spite of the inequality of its citizens’ positions and profits, there is only a population of passers-by, a network of residences temporarily appropriated by pedestrian traffic, a shuffling among pretences of the proper, a universe of rented spaces haunted by a nowhere or by dreamed-of places.  (de Certeau 1984: 103)

Space, as frequentation of places rather than a place stems in effect from a double movement: the traveller’s movement, of course, but also a parallel movement of the landscapes which he catches only in partial glimpses, a series of ‘snapshots’ piled hurriedly into his memory and, literally, recomposed in the account he gives of them [ . . . ] Travel [ . . . ] constructs a fictional relationship between gaze and landscape.  (Auge 1995: 86)

Place and non-place are rather like opposed polarities: the first is never completely erased, the second never totally completed; they are like palimpsests on which the scrambled game of identity and relations is ceaselessly rewritten. But non-places are the real measure of our time.  (Auge 1995: 79)

Our encounter with objects in space forces us to reflect on our selves, which can never become ‘other,’ which can never become objects for our external examination. In the domain of real space the subject-object dilemma can never be resolved.  (Morris 1993c: 165)

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