Urban Habitat
A Co-Existence of the Senses
Opening 19 November 7 pm

‘In urban space I see an expression of a particular society’s values regarding democracy, identity and citizenship. Public and private space are key elements of the imagined communities we call nations. The displayed body of work investigate the individual’s relationship with their private habitat and the social built environment. From these two realms we construct our personal meaning of place.’ (Diego Ferrari)

Nearly everywhere, humanity is becoming urbanised. More than half of all people worldwide live in cities. The city is not only about buildings, yet the built environment dominates our experience of living in urban settings.

For over twenty years the photographic work of London-based photographer Diego Ferrari has investigated how people relate with space physically, intellectually and emotionally. The photographic project he is showing from 19 to 26 November 2010 at okk/raum29 focuses on everyday actions of the body in space, and individual emotional responses. The show is curated by urban dialogues’ artistic director.

Diego Ferrari (Argentina1965) is an artist and photographer. He studied at the Escola Llotja in Barcelona, completed a Fine Art BA at Goldsmith’s College University of London. He works in London and teaches on the master’s degree course on design and photography at the Escola Elisava in Barcelona. He also teaches ‘Photography, Art and Architecture’ at Central Saint Martins College of Art and is currently a tutor for the BA in photography at Kingston University, London. He has been commissioned amongst others during the last six years by Whitechapel Gallery (London), InIVA (Institute of International Visual Art, London), House of World Cultures (Berlin) and Fundacio d’ Espais d’Art Contemporani (Girona, Spain).

Galerie okk/raum 29

Prinzenallee 29, 13359 Berlin u8 pankstraße

Opening 19 November 7 pm

20 to 26 November 2010 daily 5 to 9 pm

urban dialogues – home

Above: still from AlexandLiane’s video for “Shoes” by the band Tiga

Monday February 15, Museek No 3 programme

It has been years since MTV more or less stopped playing music videos and cut to the chase to sell pure image, nevertheless it is entirely possible that these are the very same years in which the field may have opened up a bit to new talent which have gone on to produce some of the most creative new work since the dawn of the medium.

Regardless of budget or country, the majority of the music videos featured in MUSEEK No. 3 were essentially able to take a clever idea and run with it to great sucess.

The videos seem to successfully embrace the excitement of human life in this day and age, and in most cases one can’t help but taken aback by their inventiveness.

Although I could easily write about nearly every video in the programme I chose a few to review:

“Evident Utensil” by Ray Tintori for the band Chairlift has utilized a technique I’ve not yet seen, namely: you know when an online video breaks up into a sort of Predator-like digi-garble while it is beginning to play? Of when a DVD is scratched? Tintori’s video is basically constantly morphing with that effect under control. I am so glad someone did this.

The Royksopp video “Happy Up Here” basically makes the oldschool arcade game Space Invaders attack a real city (Berlin?) on the special-effects level as good as any Hollywood Blockbuster –terribly entertaining, especially if you are familiar with the game itself.

Jeff Desom video for Hauschka’s song Morgenrot which just shows a burnig piano falling off a skyscraper, was positively captivating. Daniel Eskils on the other hand simply used an overhead projector and dry-ease markers for the band.

Pop culture may have left Lenny Kravitz and his coolness to chill back in the 90s where they more or less belong, but a simple remix by house superstars Justice plus a surprising video with a clever idea behind it somehow turns his radio pop into something fresh and relevant.

Not much point in describing Jonas Meier’s video “One Up Down Left Right” for the band Rusconi but it should be watched.

AlexandLiane’s video for “Shoes” by the band Tiga integrates retro fashion with what appears to be an early-70s-looking television talkshow-type programme to weave a goofily surreal piece.

The Presets “If I know You” is basically a group of young Billy Elliott-esque teenagers dancing across Los Angeles – so damn charming.

Ethan Lader’s video for Rob Roy’s “Fur in My Cap” is essentially a tongue-in-cheek Hip-hop song, but what sets it apart is the theme essentially being: The means and lifestyle are within the context of 14-15 year olds in a neighbourhood which contradict the bling-and-ho lyrics… which, with a bit of clever camera work and effects, makes it just damn entertaining.

The Justice video “Stress” in which a young gang out violently causing trouble everywhere they go in Paris really begged the question: is it just a bunch of punk kids or rather a disturbing social commentary on France’s racial turmoil…?

Metronomy’s  “A thing for me” was -wow- a sing along with the sing along bouncy-ball comes to life bouncing wildy bopping people on the head!

-Paul J. Thomas