“What will the future city look like, in their vision? It will be a city of strong, small neighborhoods, not a metropolis. Here, shared space – community space – is more important than public space. The emphasis is on collectivity and a new culture of living, as well as the preservation and protection of the local culture and the local knowledge. Cities are redefined into smaller sustainable territories organized on the local level. New allegiances are forged as local communities connect with the world and with each other on their own terms. In an age of local collaborations, sharing ideas and practices with the world is essential.
“Today, after the financial crisis of 2008 and the Occupy movements of 2011, this vision matters more than ever. In 2007, I saw the exhibition Design for the Other 90% at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York. The cover of the catalogue showed an African woman drinking from a puddle of muddy water using specially designed filter that looked like a simple straw. The title of the exhibition implied that I, as a visitor to the show, was part of the 10 percent. I was reminded of this last year when I came across a photo of an Occupy Wall Street protester holding a poster saying “We are the 99%.” And I was surprised at how rapidly our sense of which world we belong to had changed – in only four years.
“That said, I believe that people who live in stressed conditions can develop the tools they need for transforming their communities and their environment for the better. By doing so, places of crisis become places of hope. For me, the communities I worked with in Caracas and in Amsterdam are just that. They articulate a new culture of living that other communities, in seemingly more stable environments, can learn from in the search for a sustainable existence.” ~Marjetica Potr
More about Marjetica Potr may be found here, on the web page of her gallery.
This lecture is part of the Art, Design, and the Public Domain Lecture Series, and will be introduced by GSD faculty member Krzysztof Wodiczko.
Marjetica Potrc ‘Notes on Participatory Design 1' 2011 ink on paper 21 x 29,7cm Courtesy of the artist
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