The Funambulist

Monthly Archives: October 2011

First of all, I would like to apologize for not having being able to write on daily basis during these last days, I will try to make it work this week. The Centre for Advanced Research in European Philosophy, King’s University College, along with the McIntosh Gallery at the University of Western Ontario are calling for papers for a conference from May 4th to 6th 2012. The latter is trying to approach… Read More

Still from the film about Slime molds by Dan Baker Ecologias Correlativas is a small ongoing (until Saturday 29th October) exhibition at the 319 Scholes Gallery in New York. It is audaciously curated by Emma Chammah & Greg Barton who attribute the foundations of this exhibition to the short text written by Felix Guattari in 1989 under the name The Three Ecologies.  In this text, F.Guattari develops his concept of ecosophy, an… Read More

Michael Oliveri is a pretty unique photographer. The subject of his photographs are in fact nanolandscapes that he creates via metal oxide fumes and powders. The microscopic vision that his camera allows provide a different interpretation of the world in which scales although they seem to evolve in parallel, actually interact with each other, all being part of a complete immanent machine allowing no externality.

In this article, I should share a strong architectural experience I encountered last Saturday. The working group at Occupy Wall Street of which I am part, Education and Empowerment, and more specifically The Nomadic University, was invited to the New School as we would be provided with a classroom for us. The President of the New School, David E. Van Zandt, actively supported the movement and encouraged students and professors of the New School to… Read More

Hebron’s Old Market street /// Photo credits Since last summer, Raja Shehadeh is a regular guest and friend of the Funambulist. After the conversation that he was kind enough to have with me in his house in Ramallah and the review I did of his last book 2037, he is back on this platform as one of the weekly guest writers. Raja is a Palestinian lawyer that has spent a very important… Read More

 Pedro from La Periferia Domestica was kind enough to draw my attention to this very interesting piece of design invented by Afghan designer Massoud Hassani. Called the Mine Sweeper, this sphere is conceived to move autonomously thanks to the wind -in a similar way than Theo Jansen’s Strandbeests– and explode the  anti-personal land mines disseminated on a given terrain. The sphere is also equipped with a GPS sensor (see last picture below)… Read More

Occupy Wall Street Working Group about Education in a nearby other Privately Owned Public Space (60 Wall Street) / October 18th As it was pointed out in various articles, the mother-ship of Occupy Wall Street in New York addresses a very interesting spatial issue which, despite its specificity to NYC, opens the doors to a broader urban problem about public space. In fact, Liberty Square’s legal status is known to be a… Read More

Natures 3B by Quayola This week’s writer for the guest writers essays series is Oliviu Lugojan-Ghenciu who just graduated from the Architectural Association and wanted to share with us his take on Architecture and Motion. Oliviu starts his essay, Motion Architecture: Breakfast in a Scramjet’s Combustion Chamber with an analysis of how animation are too often considered by architects as a mere additional tool of representation when it could actually be considered… Read More

Liberty Square on October 14th 2011 Since its beginning, the movement Occupy Wall Street has been called by many names but one comes back often enough to be analyzed here: protest. Of course, one can legitimately argue that terminology is nothing compared to action and that while some people are looking for words, other are directly acting. This is definitely accurate, nevertheless, this movement has been characterized so far by a great… Read More

I recently “ran into” (via Manifest Decay) the very short film Magnetic Void (see below) by James Miller which shows a reconstruction of the British United Shoe Machinery Company building in Leicester by running its actual destruction backwards. The result is very aesthetic and we could stop the description here and let the images talk for themselves (like they often do!). However, watching this short film forcing myself to forget that this… Read More

The Trial by Orson Welles (adapted from Franz Kafka’s novel) 1962 The structuralist descriptions established by Michel Foucault about discipline are thought to be well known, especially by architects for who the book has been simplified with images that they can understand. The architectual paradigm of the panopticon (see previous essay) is quoted everywhere and became indissoluble from Foucault’s work despite its very large extents. What most people did not understand is… Read More

Liberty Square on October 9th 2011 More than three weeks into the occupation of Liberty Square, the amount of occupiers keeps increasing. Now that the press cannot ignore the movement anymore, criticism and mockery are the response. The main argument emerging from the sea of contempt is that the movement did not come up with any consistent demands. This observation is symptomatic of a profound misunderstanding (including leftists). There are no demands… Read More

I already wrote a more developed article about the 29 minute masterpiece, La Jetée, less than a year ago; nevertheless, I wanted to point out the existence of a very beautiful book that proposes an alternate (or complementary) mean of exploring the powerful universe created by Chris Marker. This book is designed by Bruce Mau, edited by the very valuable Zone Books (see previous articles about The Power of Inclusive Exclusion and Rituals… Read More

Liberty Square on October 4th 2011 / Photograph by Léopold Lambert What really matters in revolts and revolutions is what their gestation time produce in terms of inventions. To the main criticisms brought by the (old) left about the Occupy Wall Street movement, claiming that this spontaneous organization leads to nowhere in terms of agenda and expectations, I re-affirm that they are missing what needs to be looked at. The end is… Read More

It has been now three weeks that the occupation of Liberty Square in Wall Street New York started and after two weekends of confrontation with the New York Police Department, a small reflection on weaponized urban design seems appropriate. The massive arrests (about seven hundreds) of indignants by the NYPD on the Brooklyn Bridge this Saturday 1st October consecrated the highly controllable characteristic of Manhattan’s grid plans (which obviously includes its bridges)…. Read More

‘Animal’ character from The Muppetshow. Director Jim Henson. The Guest Essays series is back every Monday and today is the turn of Carla Leitão, co-founder with Ed Keller of aum Studio, professor at Pratt Institute, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and writer of a monthly architectural chronic for the Huffington Post. The introductory picture as much as the title of her essay, Pet Architecture: Human’s Best Friend might surprise more than one reader; however… Read More

« Ces noms que j’habite s’organisent en archipels. Ils hésitent aux bords de je ne sais quelle densité, qui est peut-être une cassure, ils rusent avec n’importe quelle interpellation, qu’ils débordent infiniment, ils dérivent et se rencontrent sans que j’y pense ». Édouard Glissant, Traité du Tout-Monde In about a month from now, the Funambulist will launch an additional platform of reflection, transmission and discussion of knowledge entitled ARCHIPELAGOS. This platform will consist -at… Read More