Designing and Defining Insignificant Places

island built_event's book

One may call this island a ‘place with no evident definition’. The participation of the invited people consisted in attending a theatrical duration of uneasiness on the spot, on the undefined places themselves, ‘in situ’. The collection of designed results was a collection of the uneasiness particular to each place in a specific moment. Theatricality in the ‘built event’ projects is conceived as a recording of this uneasiness that leaves traces. This is why the ‘built event’ projects are abundantly filmed, photographed and otherwise recorded, a procedure in which local newspapers were also involved.

The workshop of the island built event project was organized by the initiators, the invited people and the participants in the form of a congregation or a provisory school-university structure where the people invited interpreted the uneasy condition of a particular place. The congregation of people (initiators, invitees and participants) was committed to give a ‘definitized’ response to this place following their particular way of focusing on it. This focusing, the responses and the traces of the entire procedure, formed a theatrical play that actually constituted the sum of the work. Every participant deposited his own definition of the selected insignificant place through personal involvement and vision. The deposited constructs derived from people of different disciplines (architects, theorists, historians, philosophers, film directors, mathematicians, literature scholars, artists...) These were presented in various forms and media: architectural designs, processed images, texts, but also talks and recordings, each one in its own set terms. The built eventworks were done in the background of a self recording and vice versa.
The procedure itself was a response to the particularities of the
selected place. The selection of it was neither arbitrary nor the outcome of an analysis: The search for a distant island could not anticipate that Youra could be the final focus. It happened that this island condensed many factors of the place we were looking for. But Youra as a specific place became more important than initially expected after the search principles. This happened in every built_event project. The terms under which the place had been searched were always abandoned as soon as the place had been found. Then the place "itself" constituted the only starting point, setting the persistence of a conceptual theme. However the place in its “built event” version is never simply “in itself”. This premise creates a difference in the architecture of any place. The very “presence” of the place denies its own metaphysical conception. Presence seemed to be organized (in the ‘built event’s structure) as a heterogeneous accumulation of constructs, with no articulations. The place itself acted as the binding of these accumulated concepts, as is also the case with the pages of a book. The place was defined through this possibility of concurrent maintenance of different versions: it is rechargeable.

‘Built event’ came out of this architectonic investigation that began to focus on specific insignificant places. Furthermore, “built event” is conceived as a way of defining places through ‘in situ’ meetings of people and the collection of the material they have contributed. By conception, this “built event” procedure produced works that installed a singular relation between the selected places, their ‘conceptual constitution”, their common witnessing by the group of invitees, and the collection of the visit’s remains in the form of a book. The “built event” strategy was aiming at proposing a particular curatorial work, focused on a concrete locus. The selective editing of meetings and remains created an intended inversion: Focusing on a particular place was finally conceived as a cloud of different approaches to something missing: the place; the focused place, through this focusing, appeared blurred again, lost in an archipelago of isolated approaches. The work was purposefully an exercise of conceptual dispersal while the target appeared to be a blown-up concretization. The very act of focusing created the intended dispersal of meaning.

The built Event's series of works ended up with a real result formed as an open bounded book. The book is bound with screws; it can be opened, be recharged and re-bound. The works’ deployment consisted in the collection of the pages that form this book. The bounding keeps together different pages set in series. Structurally, the bounding keeps the continuity in an assemblage of juxtaposed things. The bounding assures a possible line, traced between distinct points. The bounding is a structure for a travel or for an archipelago. But if we accept that the pages can be reexamined, that we can read different sees within different complexes, then in the same bounded assemblage emerge infinite possibilities of recharging and reordering that construct different maps of different islands. If the book can be a possible map for an island, it will never end to a stable form. Our island, Yura, in Northern Aegean is already an archipelago because we decided to describe it this way. If we conceive the territory as an island function, we can then have a new condition about politics and space._ Aristide Antonas

The island built_event book is constructed by filippos oraiopoulos.

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