Posted on August 21, 2014

As the spatial aspect of the Home Front continues to rearticulate in different forms, am reminded of an overview of Lefevbre’s The Production of Space (1974) noted by Patrick Keiller in The Possibility of Life’s Survival on the Planet:

Spatial practice, he writes, ‘embodies a close association, within perceived space, between daily reality (daily routine) and urban reality (the routes and networks which link up the places set aside for work, “private life” and leisure). Representations of space include ‘the space of scientists, planners, urbanists, technocratic subdividers and social engineers, as of a certain type of artist with a scientific bent – all of who identify what is lived and what is perceived with what is conceived… this is the dominant space in any society (or mode of production.’ Representational space is ‘space as directly lived through its associated images and symbols and hence the space of ‘inhabitants; and ‘users’, but also of some artists and perhaps those, such as a few writers and philosophers, who describe and aspire to do no more than describe. This is the dominated – and hence passively experienced – space which the imagination seeks to change and appropriate.’ I interpreted these three descriptions to mean that, while everyday activities such as looking out of the window, or walking in the street, might be construed as spatial practice, and the designers of a building, or a new city, might be engaged in producing representations of space, if one seeks, in some imaginative way, such as writing, making images, or making films, you change and appropriate space, one is dealing with representational space. (Keiller; 2012, p15-16)

Concurrent to this; am reading Jonathan Meades; Museum without Walls, where his thoughts circulate around place:

Places are, on the other hand, heterogeneous and multipartite. Liberating. Places are feasts for the spirit. Or can be, should be. They resist classification. (Meades; 2013, p18)

Places are read serially. And to a degree they are created serially; some cities can be interpreted almost dendrologically. (Meades; 2013, p10)

We create, often without realizing that we are doing so, narratives of our everyday topographies – these are personal to us and mnemonically potent. And so is narrative central to writing. The shaping of memory and imagined memory, of self or the self we longed to be, of self in relation to place as much as in relation to people. (Meades; 2013, p10)

People make places?
Places make people?