City breaks statement
Abigail Reynolds, Nov. 2004
CITY + MAPPING + STATISTICS =
The terrain of Mount Fear is generated by data sets
relating to the frequency and position of urban crimes. Precise
statistics provided by the police are digitally plotted and rendered
by a 3D modelling programme. Each individual incident adds to the
height of the model, forming a mountainous terrain.
All Mount Fear models are built on the same principals. The imaginative
fantasy space seemingly proposed by the object/image is subverted
by the hard facts and logic of the criteria that shape it. The object
does not describe an ideal other-worldly space separated from lived
reality, but conversely describes in relentless detail the actuality
of life on the city streets.
WORDS + MAPPING + TIME = FROZEN
Using information contained in the Oxford English
Dictionary, the furniture in a study has been rearranged to map
out the relationships contained in the word check In
The Frozen Sea, the audience sees a working study. Each object in
the study has been assigned a word. Large objects are older words,
small objects are newer words. The correlations of object volume
and word age are worked out on papers, collages and blackboards
all over the study. Objects are marked up with the words they denote
in the collaged elements only.
Objects are arranged according to the following rules in both the
collages and the study: An etymological connection between two terms
means they are stacked vertically. A semantic or cognitive connection
means the objects are placed beside one another. In this work, the
study is used as a place to think and also as material to work out
the relationships between words. Once a word is mapped, the furniture
is re-assigned to work out a new word group.
CITY + MAPPING + TIME = CITY
I have been looking at ways of mapping change and
I usually work from my experience of immersing myself for a long
time in a process and place - like the way I feel about risk and
my London environment or the Dictionary department of Oxford University.
Doing this kind of research takes a very long time. It's the point
really of the work.
With City Breaks then, I have been wondering how to register the
temperature of a foreign city and then find a way to represent that
QUICKLY. It's a tall order. So I started to think about the opposite
- the cliched view of a city - the shots that all photographers
take, whether professional or amateur. And I also started to think
about the universal now and how you can see through time if you
have different photos - and that's where I am now. I have now amassed
a huge number of secondhand books of London views. Now I just need
to find lots of Helsinki books, so that I can see where there might