The Funambulist

Monthly Archives: May 2014

Baseball field in Maryland as filmed by a drone /// Project by Tomas Van Houtryve The latest conversation I released for Archipelago was recorded on May 9, 2014 with Derek Gregory at the Peter Wall Institute (University of British Columbia) where he is one of the two distinguished professors. I take the opportunity here to synthesize the main points we discussed, as well as to attempt to develop my own reflection under their influence. The… Read More

The ninth volume of The Funambulist Pamphlets that gathers and edits past articles of the blog about Science Fiction is now officially published by Punctum Books in collaboration with the Center for Transformative Media at Parsons The New School. You can either download the book as a PDF for free or order it online for the price of $7.00 or €6.00. Next volume to be published will be dedicated to literature. Click here to see the other volumes of The Funambulist… Read More

Letter of the Nazi administration concerning the “Endlösung der Judenfrage” (final solution to the Jewish question), 1942 It probably seems strange to be fighting against the notion of “solution.” After all, isn’t it what we must seek for each problem that infuriates us? “To each problem, a solution” is an idiom with which we have been continuously familiarized, and in the various architectural juries I attend, we hear either from the students… Read More

Rainier Tower in Seattle by architect Minoru Yamasaki (1977) /// Photograph by Léopold Lambert (May 2014) Regular readers of The Funambulist will have noticed that I have been often referring to the term fortress in order to describe pieces of architecture I recently encountered. This word refers to the defensive qualities that each of these architectures presents through its physicality in the way it “organizes bodies in space” (that is still my definition for… Read More

In the first days of my recent trip to the U.S./Canadian West Coast trip for Archipelago, I drove to San Diego and went to see the infamous materialization of the border between the United States and Mexico. This wall is one of the many on the planet that “protect” the Globalized North from the “rest of the world,” From the Israeli wall in the West Bank to the Korean DMZ without forgetting… Read More

Film still from Infiltrators (2013) by Khaled Jarrar: woman climbing Israeli Wall to enter East Jerusalem Today is the annual day to commemorate the 1948 Nakba that led to the displacement of about 750,000 Palestinians from the land seized for the state of Israel. In the following text, Hanna Baumann describes the action of Palestinian people who do not have access to the land West of the separation barrier (see the newest… Read More

Antony Gormley, Drawing from the series New York Drawings (1997-98) The following text was written for a roundtable seminar entitled Design, Politics and the Question of Form organized yesterday at the department of design of the New School (New York)  by Mahmoud Keshavarz (listen to our past conversation on Archipelago) in company of Clive Dilnot, Victoria Hattam, Orit Halpern, and Otto van Busch. Writing this text allowed me to formulate retrospectively in… Read More

Yesterday (May 8, 2014), newspaper Le Monde published an article written by Delphine Roucaute, about the method used by French immigration services in order to judge whether an undocumented body is younger or older than 18 years old. The difference is crucial to the fate of this body who would be unconditionally authorized to stay in France and offered services if determined younger, but expelled from the territory if determined older. The method used to reach such determination is… Read More

Image extracted from Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975) The Abu Ghraib photographs are at the end of this article. Warning: they are highly disturbing and potentially traumatizing. While driving on the roads of the North American West Coast to continue my Archipelago journey, I had the opportunity to re-listen to the five hours of podcast that Les Nouveaux Chemins de la Connaissance (French radio program) had dedicated… Read More

Image: Alan Prohm The 53rd Funambulist Paper associates the editorial line of the forthcoming second volume centered around the body with an additional contribution to the series of texts about the work of Arakawa and Madeline Gins. The following essay, written by Alan Prohm, friend of the Reversible Destiny Foundation (now lead by Joke Post and Momoyo Homma) and instigator of the The BodyBuilding Project (3-Week residency at the Watermill Center, following 1-year course… Read More

301 Rhode Island street in San Francisco /// Photograph by Léopold Lambert (April 2014): The following article is a sequel and a synthesis of two past articles. While the first one, written in February 2013 was comparing the architectural design of the Western embassies to medieval castles (less in their aesthetics than in their spatial organization), the second published a few weeks ago was examining the colonial characteristics of gentrification especially in New York. I… Read More