Urban Exploration Workshop
13 - 17.11.2014
Upon invitation by ACAX and Barnabas Bencsik, BUPAP (HU) and EXPODIUM (NL) embarked on a three-day urban exploration workshop in Budapest, exploring in-situ the Nyugati Railway Terminal, Skála Metró and the West End Shopping Mall.
Identifying stations as the cathedrals of modernity and shopping malls as the cathedrals of post-modernism, Expodium choose to dive into the relational prospects of both ‘monuments’, research their history, function, social relevance and position as mobility and consumption ‘meccas’ of the contemporary world.
Bupap choose to explore the area of a railway station from the fin du siècle (the era of integration), think on the future of a recently unfunctional socialist department store (from the era of isolation) and follow the footsteps of costumers to a western-style shopping mall (in the era of colonisation).
Both partners will identify Nyugati tér as a symbolic space where a central-european community is searching identity between West and East.
This visit functioned as a context for both collectives to get familiar with each other’s mode of operation – having established walking as a common mean of research and knowledge production.
Click HERE to access a short visual documentation of the in-situ research.
Both partners will be working on reflecting upon the knowledge gained during the visit the commitment of posting findings, reflections and visual documentation of their research on CROSSING BUDAPEST blog.
The blog will function as a transparent process based reflective platform.
The project is part of DACS and is generously supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
FRISO WIERSUM (EXPODIUM) @ Can't Forget the 'Motor City': Why Detroit Matters
23.10.2014 @ Pakhuis De Zwijger
Expodium's Friso Wiersum will be speaking about our residency and experience in Detroit at the Can't Forget the 'Motor City': Why Detroit Matters conference.
Why Detroit Matters
Detroit has been regularly in the news for several years. We all know about its bankruptcy, abandonment, arson and the small-scale creative revival of Downtown. But there is so much more to understanding what has happened to Detroit and what it means for the rest of the urban world.
This evening’s program will challenge what we think we know about Detroit. It will place the city in a wider regional and metropolitan context, explain the long history of the city’s decline and contextualise the geography of its so-called ‘renaissance.’
Speakers include both prominent Detroiters and Dutch students and artists who have spent time in city. Key topics include understanding the lessons from Detroit, exploring the new visions emerging from the city and explaining why what happens in Detroit matters for other cities around the world.
Click HERE to find out more about the program.
@ KRETS - VISUAL DOCUMENTATION
Expodium’s NIGHTWALKERS, KRETS and Plan B Amsterdam designed a CRASH COURSE on walking.
The session included a questionnaire for all visitors to fill in, a take away motivational text regarding walking, a presentation with some examples on urban walking and of course a night stroll in the city.
Malmo has been one of the most live cities we ever walked at night. It is a city you listen to rather than just visually observe. From open space bars to domestic parties, Malmo is a true child of gentrification processes were youth, hipsters, public parks and immigrant night shops co-exist and interact in (to our surprise) rather sufficient way.
Click HERE for the visual documentation of the event
We all remember at least one or two great walks we had in our life.
And since memories are selective and subjective manifestations of our past, so is our perception of those walks.
But wouldn't be cool to try to trace our lives through a succession of walks, from early childhood to adulthood?
And while most of us tend to revisit those moments in our heads, we seek to master simple strategies on maintaining an open eye for new adventures that might take place outdoors.
Are we architects of our world or merely passive walkers on paths that were set for us by others?
Can we consider walking as a mean to develop a system of attention to the outside as well as to the inside? And if so, are we capable of utilizing our findings to build a better living experience?
20.06.2014 @ Pop-up Onder MAX
To kick off the Utrecht Day of Architecture - #dvdautrecht - Expodium, Meer Merwede, Dance Improvisation Utrecht&Amsterdam and some 30 participants nightwalked Meer Merwede area. Meer Merwede and Expodium provided everyone with a site specific SOUNDSCAPE for this NIGHTWALKERS session. For NIGHTWALKERS MERWEDE #2, Expodium and MeerMerwede collaborated with DI U&A: Contemporary Dance Platform. By means of interventions Iris van Deppen and her dancers added spatial comments to the area.
Merwede is the area alongside the Merwede channel: a rough edge to Utrecht. Amidst creative entrepeurial activity, a prostitution zone and old industrial infrastructure the area's history influences the shape to come. Where are we at, how do you experience Merwede?
To check the visual documentation click HERE
Photos by Expodium and Donika Davids
NIGHTWALKERS is a series of voluntary collective night strolls in the city, followed by a discussion about the subconscious relations between the participants and the land they walked on.
NIGHTWALKERS is an open form of operation; a space that calls for a collective response to what the urban landscape elegantly hides behind the night’s veil and falsely secures with the city’s lights, surveillance cameras, ‘closed’ fluorescent signs and shut window curtains. NIGHTWALKERS is an open invitation for all city dwellers to adopt, practice and develop along or beyond the guidance of Expodium.
NIGHTWALKERS uses the site specific qualities of the to be explored area and deploys artistic means to play with these qualities.
CROSSING NAIROBI: CHRONICLE OF A CANCELLATION
In the light of recent terrorist attacks in Nairobi, Expodium and The Nest are in the unfortunate position to announce that they will not be going forward with the Nairobi trajectory.
Unfortunately the situation is Nairobi is far from stable and does not allow both partners to proceed with the activities planned.
“Staying true to the conceptual and practical coordinates that our application has defined, we (Expodium and The Nest) see no current possibility of practicing Nightwalking in the city of Nairobi or shape activities in public space as initially desired.
We have therefore composed an elaborate document highlighting the reasons behind our decision.
It goes without saying that we are very grateful for the support of HIVOS and we are confident that our research and collaboration with the Nest will find different forms to manifest itself in the future."
Click HERE to read Chronicle of a Cancellation.
Expodium in collaboration with The Nest (Kenya), initiated a research trajectory that seeked to explore the complexities and relational prospects of the multiple narratives that constitute Nairobi as
a. a diplomatic city where expatriates construct and feed a new economy,
b. an establishment for the middle class, embracing modernity and striving for social justice, seeking means of understanding, intergrading and shaping this new world, and
c. a multi-tribal constitution with an unstable history and an ecosystem of a labor class with limited agency.
Expodium planned to visit Nairobi and The Nest in May to embarck collectively on a 10 day research looking at the spatial effects those narratives impose to the city.
Implementing NIGHTWALKERS and utilizing The Nest’s already existing platforms, the intention was to focus on what connects and what separates different parts of the city and additionally work towards a collection of stories and singular narratives that combined, give a strong representation on how Nairobi envisions its future.
EXPODIUM @ CULTURELE ZONDAGEN & KUNSTVLAAI 2014
22.05 - 25.05.2014
Three events – three different locations. The weekend of 24th – 25th May brought Expodium to the front line of Culturele Zondagen in Utrecht and Kunstvlaai in Amsterdam.
Co-operation Cartesius / Cartesius Laboratory #2
The theatrical audio tour Cooperation Cartesius lead the viewer through the future of the new work . Cartesius Laboratory # 2 looked right back, and further ahead than 2040.
Among others Nutrecht , ProtoSpace , All Inn Fitness & Health Foundation and the Planing opened their doors . The audience, equipped with their smart phone and headset strolled through the Cartesius region in the year 2040!
Photo by Hanne Nijhuis.
The day concluded in Werkspoor Kathedraal were poet Ruben van Gogh took everyone on a journey to the middle of the 20th century - the time the industrial labor stormed Werkspoor, followed by Pauline Terreehorst (director of Futura Plaza) who explored the future of working in a live essay.
CZ De Stad De Toekomst | Lancering Utrechtse Stadsambassade
During Culturele Zondagen on May 25 , the City of Utrecht Embassy was launched.
After Rotterdam and Heerlen, Utrecht is the third largest city in the Netherlands with a City Embassy.
City Embassy is a collaboration of several initiatives Utrecht with Amsterdam’s Pakhuis de Zwijger. It is a collection of active and energetic people, thinkers, doers, initiatives and organizations with their eyes and hearts focused on the city. It is an open network of city -makers ' who are firmly rooted in society, and from there to contribute to social and urban renewal. Together they form the Embassy.
KUNSTVLAAI 2014: Spaces In Dialogue / PARKLIFE 2.0
During KUNSTVLAAI 2014, Expodium joined the afternoon session of SPACES IN DIALOGUE. ?In line with the general concept of Kunstvlaai, the central theme within SPACES IN DIALOGUE revolved around the varied and experimental ways in which initiatives engage with space and ways of presentation.
In addition, Expodium organized a series of informal strolls in Amstelpark titled PARKLIFE 2.0.
Each walk ran for approximately 45 min and deviated form the norms of an ordinary tour guide. The park functioned as a stimulus and an associative space, bringing in the foreground issues such as decay, re-development, sustainability and
symbiosis. Expodium associated the park’s history with the organization’s mode of operation and its transition from a foundation to a collective. PARKLIFE 2.0 will be lead by Nikos Doulos.
Click HERE to access the visual documentation of all the events.
MORE FUTURE! Or: How We Eat Ourselves
17.05.2014 @ Stadsschouwburg Utrecht
Within the framework of SPRING Utrecht's 'Utrecht Connection' program Expodium presented an afternoon with befriended artists, some city strolling and a movie.
After we said goodbye to the ideas of malleability we seem adrift in a world lacking big ideas to strive after. Utopias these days are nothing more than television shows. This used to be different: the modernistic architecture of the 60ies is proof to this. Built surroundings would build the better man. That contemporary ‘better man’, builds his surroundings on the remains of modernism. We cannibalize our past.
With Ruud Bakker, Geert van Mil, Wietske Maas, Joris Lindhout, the movie Solyent Green, and an urban picknick.
Click HERE to check the visual documentation of the event.
NIGHTWALKERS_VOICEOVER was an intuitive urban experiment in the form of a stroll at and around Coolsingel, Rotterdam. The event was commissioned by Laurie Cluitmans for Sculpture International Rotterdam as part of the TRIBUTE TO AN AVENUE.
Photos by Aad Hoogendoorn
NIGHTWALKERS_VOICEOVER was a psychogeographic performance in the form of an evening stroll - an unsolicited tour assembled by multiple narratives, each relating to different aspects of the experience of urban life and the myth of the city. The tour entailed a script, a soundtrack and a voiceover, carried through a series of acts performed instinctively by the participants against the backdrop of the Coolsingel.
Expodium would like to thank LUCHTSINGEL for providing access to the roofgarden at Schieblock.
Click HERE for the visual documentation of the event.
MAKE IT COME LIKE EXPODIUM
NEWSLETTER 2014/01- EXPODIUM FROM A TO Z
As you might know 2013 was a year of transitions for us: no longer could we count on structural financial support. During last year we succesfully explored various ways of working as a collective; either developing a workshop for an educational institution, being commissioned for a series of events by a musuem, parttaking in a bottum-up city development program or producing new work in the form of a soft data collection set for a festival. Luc Janssens left us after years of great work. Friso Wiersum joins us full time now.
Thus, Expodium now is a collective of three [Nikos Doulos, Friso Wiersum, Bart Witte]. As ever, we are dedicated to researching the city in all possible ways.
Check bellow our customized abecedarium that best describes who we are and what we do and click HERE to view our first newsletter for 2014!
MONUMENT UNREALIZED PUBLICATION
SOME THOUGHTS ON ESTATE RUINS, TOUR MAPS, LOVER-BOYS, SUPER HEROES, BLUE BALLONS AND BOAT CRUISES
To begin with, if Monument Unrealized was indeed a ‘verbal tango’ workshop, there was definitely an invitation, a soundtrack to be stimulated by, geography to be practiced upon and various stages to be performed. There were rules and guides, a space for plenty of free-styling and some extraordinary spins and twists from the participants’ side.
In a nutshell, what this publication does, is offer a solid stage for five dance solos on paper that seek for partners; A ‘paper tango’ if you like.
Those narratives negotiate their impact (and therefore their monumental qualities) on public space and public sphere by addressing collective feelings, hypothesizing and devising imaginary scenarios. They are stories that suggest a new reading to a place, implement schemes and physical structures to impregnate it and search for their relevance on a meta-level.
MU's goal was to highlight artistic doing not only as a matter of form and materiality, but also as a concept driven process followed by contextualization and research in the city itself.
CIU:CAPITALIST METABOLISM UTRECHT TOUR
31.10 - 3.11.2013
"The Capitalist Metabolism Tour is a unique chance to move beyond a passive interpretation of our surroundings to one of mindful observation. A chance to make ourselves aware of the (drastic) differences between the partite conduits of a city that together forms the heart of the Dutch economy."
Capitalist Intelligence Unit (CIU): Utrecht Metabolism is a research into data.
CIU as an operation is exactly what cookies do on Internet. They stereotype you, put labels on you, and thus make your data set more and more accurate.
Accurate data sets are worth money.
But as with capitalist systems online, you also leave traces in real time. In the shop where you do buy your groceries, in the street where somebody saw you, in the neighborhood you are living, even by reading the books you read.
For the headquarters of CIU, we determined four archetypical Utrecht inhabitants. The Mentality model of Motivaction helped us determine which ones.
We gave them different names : Timothy (an expat ICT manager), Sandra (co-owner of an organic bakery), Bertus (director of a recycling company) and Nouchra (parttime cleaning lady) and did quite some internet research to find befitting neighbourhoods and print the out as a cartographic basis to our research.
We collected beforehand some hard data: financial matters mostly and we all (Expodium and the visitors) moved over (on BIKES) to each neighborhood to collect soft data: what do the streets look like? do people close their curtains? Whatever strikes them.
Back in the headquarters we invited the participants to place the collections of soft data on the map.
Our aim was to stimulate the visitor’s thinking on what is their role in the metabolic system, capitalism, even capitalism at local city level, is.
We offered no conclusions. But we did offer real numbers, real statistics, and an extensive participatory research in the streets of Utrecht.
Click here for the visual documentation of the project.
Click here for the review of the project by Kimberly Waldbillig
The Utrecht Metabolism Tours were realized for IMPAKT 2013: Capitalism Catch-22 upon invitation by Monnik
Make It Come Like Expodium
Nightwalkers - Voiceover (Rotterdam
October Salon, Belgrade
Cartesius Laboratory #1
Monument Unrealized, Heslinki