Tuesday, March 29, 2011

RBC: Urban Earth: Mumbai

Urban Earth: Mumbai  |  Raven-Elison & Askins

Urban Earth, with studies in Mumbai, Mexico City, and London:  Their approach: “walking across some of Earth’s biggest urban areas, to explore their spatial realities for the people who live there and challenge dominant media discourses regarding the places in which most of us now live.  The idea is to walk a transect across an urban area, taking a photograph every ten steps.” (84) 

The concept reminds me of Christopher Girot's essay 'Vision in Motion' in the Landscape Urbanism Reader (Waldheim, 2006), on the role of new representational techniques and the ability to document the interstitial, non-destination spaces, echoing Conan, the 'black holes' in the urban fabric that   “...have become the dominant feature of peripheries and urbanized countries… need to consider these long non-entities as probably equally significant as the most celebrated vistas…” (Waldheim 2006, p.100)

Each frame becomes a story which is fascinating on it's own although nothing you would typically document in the day to day.  Here's a random image of London from their Flickr stream...

And the transect is also interesting as an experience, alluding to Girot's new representational techniques, as seen in this great video of the stitched together for Mexico City:

(from Ecological Urbanism, Mostafavi & Doherty, eds. 2010, p.84-93)

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