Who are the real urbanists?
Review by Elisa Linda Socolnikov Saether – Barokkminimalist
The five windows of “By the Way” Gallery are filled with images of urban life. Boomblaster, bicycle, “unavoidable” advertisements, graffiti, and people in attire which lends association to homelessness. The prints are colorful, each with a single tone dominance, though poor quality, and have a pleasing effect on the public space. In addition a text of poetic quality unfolds throughout the 5 images.
Here is an aesthetic which reminds of the commercial approach of using anti-commercial material to advertise to those individuals who detest advertisement. But here the text sells nothing…or does it? What is a real urbanist? All of us who use the city have a different approach. Some drive cars and experience the autonomy of the road, becoming part of the machinery creating the ocean-like sounds that penetrate the inner spaces of the city. Others use the collective transportation, pay overpriced tickets to help reduce pollution. Others bike around the city, amid traffic obstacles and pedestrians who pound the pavement by foot. We have coffee drinking café goers and suits going about their business….but who are the real urbanists? That is what I feel I’m being sold here. Take back the streets, be part of creating our public space. Those individuals who bring music and diversity to the mono-aesthetic which dominates every day city life. Here is the best use of this gallery space I have witnessed.
The artists have taken into account not only the project itself, but an understanding and intention of presentation. There is a strong correlation between the content of the images, the effect on the public space and the title ”Real Urbanists”. There is no doubt that the overall effect lends itself to the choice of gallery, which leads me to wonder if it is not the gallery itself which is the main inspiration to the theme. Or is it that this group of artists and architects knows what it takes to use whatever space given to its best advantage?