I’ve always been intrigued by locked gates. What secrets lay behind the surface of our forgotten urban infrastructure? What inspiration is to be found in a rusted knob or a cavernous corrugated structure?
Last year I did some Urban Spelunking around the Bay Area. Alameda and Richmond have some pretty intriguing spots; spaces ripe for a Tim Walker photo shoot, or an Ok Go music video. And these french hacker-artists have taken it to a whole ‘nother level.
So of course I’m excited to attend the Urban Explorations: A Contemporary Introduction this Saturday, January 19, 2 p.m. at the deYoung museum, San Francisco. More info.
“For decades, a particular brand of urban explorer has felt compelled to delve into the unseen and underground layers of city infrastructure. Guided by a sense of adventure and a desire for a broader understanding of the systems that support contemporary urban life, these explorations often reveal as much about the explorer as the territory explored. What is it about these unseen structures that so captures the imagination? Does this obscured geography map an unknown within us as well? What can the exploration teach us, a self-identified evolving species of surface dweller, about the various systems that make up our built and “natural” world? Can we hope to improve or recontextualize the interwoven social and ecological fabrics that make up our environment?”
“Join the Black Rock Arts Foundation and de Young Artist Fellows Sean Orlando and Rebar for an afternoon of conversation and multimedia presentations that explore these questions and other topics related to the contemporary practice of urban exploration. This event is part of Urbanauts, Sean Orlando and Rebar’s ongoing de Young Fellowship project, which maps, examines, and documents unseen urban infrastructure to inform a series of conceptualized and fabricated objects based on the aesthetics and function of these hidden systems.”