03 August 2016
Architectural Association, London
In responding to this year’s summer school theme ‘LondonTIME’, Unit 3 approached the city as an archive of a place’s history; a depository that can be traversed, rewound, stopped and replayed at a particular fragment of time or fast-forwarded into the future. Under this scope, much like literature, film, poetry and any form of storytelling, the city transforms into a dialectical interplay between body and place; a form of narrative and communication.
Drawing from Walter Benjamin’s notion of the flâneur, we navigated and mapped the streets of the East End of London. Beyond simply reproducing and tracing what is already known, Unit 3 aimed to discover and explore new realities and spatial possibilities. In addition, following Sergei Eisenstein’s dialectic on film as a ‘geography of a moving image’ Unit 3 studied London’s various portrayals in cinema, in an effort to create a cartographic rewriting of the East End through our collective experiences, memories, arguments and revelations.
Experimenting with techniques such as video, photography, time-lapse, stop-motion and collage, we explored the layers of the physical, cultural and historic space of the East End. We followed a filmic journey of its ideological constructs through time, aiming to capture its transformation in motion and to project our visions for its future both as a physical place and as a cultural expression. Film is a modern form of cartography, and the work of Unit 3 aims to create ‘filmscapes’ as voyages through time in a complex tour of identities and visions for the East End.
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