Presentations: Babak Davarpanah Varnosefadarani

Following on from last session: non place/non plan/non public:

Urban screen might afford new areas of political activities.

Today: practice – what is ‘in-between’?  Walked round the ‘psychogeography trail’ and brought in the chance to use psychogeography.

3 versions: west from the Bank, taking in 2 of the temples: Mithras, Temple church, Masonic lodge.  Added a smile to the sadness of rainy London – the smile was the path taken.

Critique of psychogeographers: most bring in chance and serendipity.  Useful tool for exploring neighbourhood, but not for challenging the system, critiquing the system

Started from Cyprus (otherness of the places around here)
Waited at Canning Town for Bank – 15 minutes journey. Went across the river, through crowds and through the Wall – lose one’s materiality.
Evidence 1: Bank memo from opposite Temple of Mithras. Asked directions, sent in wrong direction, but found it eventually.

Found Non-Place aspect: temple not a temple, in a direction where it should not be, a private property where it should be a public space.

Next:  Temple Church. Church was closed. Private property – closed for choir practice on this particular afternoon.

Temple Courts Inn

Looking for own bank – to exchange money from own bank.

First temple redundant, second temple closed.

Next – meet a friend in Ccovent Garden, looking for the Masonic temple. Asked newspaper seller

3 agendas – got money, change money, meet friend

“Feeling solitude on account of the crowds all around”

“To Robinson” – psychogeography – ‘armchair psg’ French: ‘robinsoner’

We need to observe the ordinary daily events and non-places.
Questions: References in Kafka and others ‘Robinsoner’ – solitude and capacity to imaging the better. PsG can get reduced to flicking through a travel mag on a superficial level.

Taey: How do immigrants observe spaces? Coming from the outside we see much more.
A: Walkabout in Australia is a deep psg reference.

Anita: interested in spaces in between, and in between practices: on a political level need to know the space and walk it, so communication between residents, planners and location needed.
A:  Need to be aware of the political – need to make it human scale, claim the location back.

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