PROGRAMME E: WAYS OF SEEING, WAYS OF BEING
Curated by: NADJA DAEHNKE WITH RYNO KEET
FRIDAY AFTERNOON G 12:30 – 16:30 | SATURDAY MORNING 10:30 – 12:30
Download Programme E Map (PDF)
How to define a City – is it the bricks and mortar, the hard spaces of pavement and façade, the softer spaces of plantings and park benches? Or is a City its people? A beehive is nothing if it consists merely of combed wax; it is the inhabitants that give it meaning and value. But if one argues that inhabitants are the City, how can they determine it? How can the individual – the pedestrian, the shop-keeper, the commuter and the loiterer – help to define what this City is going to be?
Perhaps this is a false, idealistic premise. Has history not shown us that such humanist understandings can be imaginary utopias, obscuring the hard ideological forces that shape the hapless individual’s possibility and progress within the structured City?
Like this text, Ways of Seeing, Ways of Being is awash with questions and contradictions. It is an arena which broadly experiments with and investigates the possibilities of these two extremes: the City as shaped by its inhabitants, and the City as a structure that is imposed on its inhabitants.
Through the catalyst of art and the notion of a festival, this programme hopes to puzzle the everyday of the City – revealing new vistas, re-purposing spaces and inviting unusual behaviours in an attempt to flex the possibilities, suggesting not only alternative ways of being in the City, but an alternative City. However, within this idealism sounds a warning note: recollection of the difficult pasts and presents points to a City in which individual needs and wants can be subverted by greater ideological drives.