HOME

Document A

REFLECTIONS ON A HABITABLE UTOPIA
The town is a place where the life and the cultures of many beings and social
groups meet. As a consequence, it has become the legitimate hybridization of
heterogeneity. In the town, the most different expressions of life and culture
live together, from the glamour of what is called refined to the vernacular.
Throughout the years, the town has been the theatre of all the important
events, prosperous or not, but also the image, in some way, of the
impersonality where all the vices hide. Since the Modernism, it is, without a
doubt, a setting of changes where the actors are its inhabitants. While the
nobility hides behind its rural estates, the people, the group, fights in the
town.

There are multiple spaces, where people do or could live, that configure the
behavior of inhabitants in a specific manner and, at the same time, the last
define the place, the domestic one just as well as the urban one. Within each
space, practices which determine a good part of the individual and collective
being spread out. Nowadays, the town is more than an inhabited space; it is a
symbol – the living presence of a design – that implies fiction, a
representation of the narrative, of the complexity of modern life.

The town exists in many different ways. On the one hand, it is a material type
of reality, socially constructed, where we live and who we establish a sensual
and symbolic relationship with. On the other hand, it is also an imaginary
representation a symbolic and discursive construction, product of our
imagination and above all of the language.
We all know that the difference between a developed country city and an
underdeveloped country city does not matter so much anymore as we can
observe similar conflicts, analogue images and ways of living where, sadly,
violence, lack of affective communication, contamination and chaos rule.
Many times and especially over the last years, current art has turned to these
spaces trying to understand – to give sense maybe to – these set ways of
living. Trying to give a social and committed content to the duty of artists in
our present world.

We might be looking for a convincing explanation to the proliferation of new
neighborhoods and invented cities, fictional urbanizations in which life is
presented as something ideal when, in fact, there are some kind of huge
Truman Show. In the new neighborhoods, young couples are offered an ideal
life of commodity and fantasy but there are not real cities – and as a
consequence lives.

The objects of this artistic observation are the city centers as well as the
suburbs. Shopping malls, communication routes, our work and occupations,
and the ways of living close to indigence as well as the almost obscene
opulence.

We all witness that the streets, the squares and parks are the settlement of
hundreds of people who survive in fictional conditions. What we conceive as a
source of work and an alternative to a better life paradoxically becomes a
place where we can become destitute and a complete dropout. On the other
hand, the advances of the communication media, instead of bringing us
together, have driven us apart from others. The ease with which we can speak
to a friend who lives on the other side of the world through a Webcam makes
us think that we keep an almost universal contact but in fact, we are more far
away than ever. The town has turned onto a virtual show of cybercommunicated
people. All this is reflected in the present art.

The town is being re-invented all the time. New ways of working, connecting,
enjoying oneself. Big advertisements, screens and lights saturate streets and
boulevards with a unique purpose: to sell an illusion and an idea of society
built on a boundless consumption.
However, it is not always this way in the modern town. Each time, it becomes
more and more a multi-cultural, multi-social and multi-racial space. It is
obvious that nowadays new typologies, replacing the functions formerly
subordinated to traditional spaces of public and domestic life, meet. New
signs get stronger, the news icons that support collective self-sufficiency and
give legitimacy to the visual and functional representation of mega-malls and
3 shopping centers. All together a strategy that receives a poor answer in the
informal market and in the street vending, both typical features of our
countries.

“Urban groups and tribes” work their way out and are so many times the
object of present art. We can see that in many cities with specific views but
which can be easily extrapolated to another town. We take more and more
interest in an anthropology of what is close, like an analysis method, in order
to understand the social development of our communities, knowing the
difficulty of the exercise. The town rises from an inherited pattern that has
been adapting itself – in a constant clash of interests – to the social body’s
needs. Like a palimpsest, the tracks of the human activity have built the
frame of our cities giving us the opportunity of studying the very territoryconnected
identity of their people. Nevertheless, the technological development has caused a crisis of the analysis method. A place could be
defined by an identity, a set of connections or a historical treasure, but, in
practice, the very concept of place is replaced by other concepts more linked
with technology.

Many artists try to collect in their work the lights and the shadows that break
from the conjunction of these two tensed extremes: an identity linked to a
time of traditions that ties us up with a territory – that is about to disappear –
and a new identity opened to a modern world that answers to a
inclusion/exclusion logic and to the violence this situation generates.

About Claudio Molina:
BA in Drama from the University of Córdoba. Degree in Graphic Design from
the University of Seville. Editor of the Editorial Ediciones_Ecobuk
independent. Art Director and Manager CMSEO. She directs her work towards
gráfico_web design theory, typography, corporate, web accessibility, video
art and contemporary art actions, especially those related to public
participation and that these actions generate change in society. All his
research focuses on the experience the user has with the digital medium and
the relationship that arises between them, being valued by some accessibility
for easy access to information and on the other hand it exerts on the same
manipulation of ideas, concepts and presentation of the same in digital and
analog formats social. He has published books and articles on graphic design
in different media. He is currently Creative Director CMSEO

http://www.claudiomolina.com.es

Advertisements


%d bloggers like this: