A D S P R E D E L S E / U D S P R E D E L S E
“Why not set a higher value of dispersal? Instead of living just one place, and trying in vain to gather yourself together there, why not have five or six rooms dotted around Paris? I’d go an sleep in Denfert, I’d write in the Place Voltaire, I’d listen to music in the Place Clichy, I’d make love at the Poterne des Peupliers, I’d eat in the Rue de la Tombe-Issoire, I’d read by the Parc Monceau, etc.”
The projects is based on the text above by French author Georges Perec. The text is from his acclaimed book Species of Spaces and Other Pieces. I couldn't get this, more or less, brilliant idea out of my mind. How would it really be like? - living in a fragmented apartment and with a major need of movement. I decided to take the next step and create my own version of it. But I had to get Copenhagen under my skin and find out more about the certain neighbourhoods of the Danish capital - after all the chapter, which Perec's text is part of, is called Death of the Neighbourhood.
I would spent countless of hours in the streets of Copenhagen, taking notes of elements of vast variety, as I didn't believe that I knew the neighbourhoods good enough. I knew that Georges Perec was familiar with nearly all Paris' neighbourhood so I felt that I needed to show his idea some dignity by observing and experiencing my site, my city, my neighbourhood. However, it wouldn't be fair to compare myself to a member of OuLiPo.
As Perec was a dedicated phenomenologist I decided to use this in my way of observing. The map shows a few of my observations. I would sit in the same spot for a while - often in a corner at a cafe. The chosen spot should have the qualities of a good lookout - I should be able to freely observe a square, a street or perhaps the cafe itself.
Some of the elements that I took notice of would be related to building typologies, sounds, spatiality and location. But I didn't have a certain structure for my way of observation. I did have a general knowledge of the specialities of each neighbourhood I visited. The visits would have an overall spontaneity connected to them.
The document below shows the twelve keywords I came up with when looking through my notes - and refrasing them spatialy (the left column in the document). Each keyword and spatial elemtent generated a representative model, which I would use in the form finding part of the project.
The keywords as they are listed:
Standstill | Stay(s) |Meeting
Crossing | Coalescence | Grafting
Passage |Closeness | Mass
Rotation | Flexibility | Instability
The models are made of cast, wood, metal and cloth. Unfortunately the text is in Danish, but I think the pictures speaks for themselves.
The greatness of monotasking. That is what the picture above is telling. The picture is taking in 1905 at the Kaaterskill Hotel in New York. The room was meant to sit in - and perhaps have a conversation. This idea complimented my project and I decided to split the appartment up into four places one would need to live after the basics of Georges Perec's idea. The places turned out to be:
The place for rest
The place for dining
The place for learning
The place for hobby
Obviously, we are equipped with some needs that I had to have in mind. I did consider the option of Towers of Pee situated around Copenhagen, but ended up with a more logical solution. I decided to make a private and social part of each place. The private would be where one would be spending time alone, while the social one would be where the dwellers of the given place (building) would meet each other - and hopefully interact. The private bathroom would be at the place for rest
More to come...
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED ALLAN BECH | 2018