BIENNIAL 2014,POST 1:THE EX TRADE UNION CENTRE:RE-USING OLD SPACES?.BY STEVEN BENSON

once ornate stairwell
once ornate stairwell

IMG_4820

The air of a disused psychiatric hospital
The air of a disused psychiatric hospital
Says it all
Says it all
Get your head OUT of the clouds and rescue me
Get your head OUT of the clouds and rescue me

 

This building is being temporarily re-used and that is better than nothing; the artistic part of me says, fab; but the political part says it is a crying shame that such a beautiful, ornate, historically diverse(in its useage)building is sinking slowly into decrepitude(exemplified in these captures). It is great,artistically, to say the art reflects back on the disused space; but in 3 and a half months it will be shut up again and derelict, left to rot.

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I felt especially sad as it was in this trade Union Centre in 1988 or 1989 that myself as part of a group of lgbt activists successfully persuaded the Centre to include sexual orientation in their Equal Opportunities Policy; and I used the libray there(:

Doorways to nowhere now except yet another Biennial "lets temporarily re-use derelict space and comment on how art mirrirs/is part of reality but do nothing permanently re the spaces themselves" type exhibition, beautiful, artistically, though it be
Doorways to nowhere now except yet another Biennial “lets temporarily re-use derelict space and comment on how art mirrors/is part of reality but do nothing permanently re the spaces themselves” type exhibition, beautiful, artistically, though it be
Trade Union, workers unite, art still mainly intact
Trade Union, workers unite, art still mainly intact

 

Never mind the art; rescue this building
Never mind the art; rescue this building

 

bare shelves set the scene
bare shelves set the scene
Needs more than a dehumidifier
Needs more than a dehumidifier
Like an old abandoned hotel of echoing empty corridors; another liminal space; what has been
Like an old abandoned hotel of echoing empty corridors; another liminal space; what has been

 

This has become a polemical lament; the art was good and quirky;but, time after time, the Biennial, for 2-4 months, has had a spectral re-inhabitation of these forlorn spaces, with NO political message that they should be re-vitalised; they are NOT just an artwork (in themselves) they are spaces that should be funded to be used AGAIN and properly, permanently occupied; the art is a good interim measure-it is SOME useage; perhaps I am being unfair on the Official Biennial; perhaps it is,partly, making my point for me, that these beautiful spaces are cruelly abandoned. I have negelected the art-work itself, but, on reflection, feel too sad to celebrate its beauties

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Published by: decayetude

ENTHUSIASMS: CLASSICAL MUSIC, ESPECIALLY OBSCURE ROMANTIC COMPOSERS; BACH/HANDEL LITERATURE, ESPECIALLY THOUGHTFUL, WELL-WRITTEN(STYLISTICALLY)NOVELS W G SEBALD WALTER BENJAMIN THEODOR ADORNO(JUST BEGINNING!) AESTHETIC PHILOSOPHY GAY MEN'S WRITING;QUEER THEORY STIMULATING DISCUSSIONS(EMOTIONALLY AND INTELLECTUALLY) GOOD RICH THICK ESPRESSO MICHAEL PONTI SPRITUALITY/LIFE'S "AURA"(BENJAMIN), WHATEVER TRANSCENDENTAL THING YOU WANT TO CALL THIS MEMORY-the elusiveness thereof. LOST TIME AND AN ATTEMPT AT ITS REDEMPTION(NON THEISTICALLY/RELIGIOUSLY)

Categories flaneur, psychogeography, spectral geography, uncanny, Uncategorized, urban decayLeave a comment

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