Wednesday, 3 March 2010

the structural dynamics of public space

i don't only ride my bike...
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the dynamics of public space
Today at 20:03 | Edit note | Delete
I saw some graffiti today, and it got me thinking. Someone had tagged racism under a stop sign, so it read "stop racism", crafty. We live in a country, and a university where public space is institutionally controlled, it's our environment but on their terms. As many of you know i'm studying the use of street art to oppose dictatorship in Spain, there's no reason why we can't use public spaces to fight the norms here.

In recent days and weeks public space in this university has been dominated by hatred, whether hanging nooses in the library, putting hoods on statues or holding parties with hateful themes the space which we all occupy is being monopolised by a minority. Even "neutral" spaces aren't accurate reflections of our community. we have one mural and it's painted on a temporary canvas so we can take it down if it proves too political. Meanwhile we're surrounded by orders "stop" "no cycles or skateboards" "no parking" "drive inside the lines", "no fun", "think inside the lines".

So tomorrow, on a day we take action for public education, why not take action for public space as well. Make where you live beautiful and make it yours. use colours, posters, flowers, whatever you want. We're at a great turning point for our university right now and this is the best chance we'll get to really make it ours, so take it. We're students, we're good at manipulating words and images, so lets do what they did in Paris while our university was still in its infancy and make the space our own. Like i have said a million times before, if you define yourself against something, you only last as long as it does, if you stand for something, you cam make it last forever so stand up and claim your own space and identity not just against someone else claiming it.


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