MN_03 Speculative Wasteland
Cécile Bouffard, Jordan Derrien, Marc Etienne, Hélène Garcia, Stéphanie Hier, Institute of Queer Ecology, Aniara Omann, Lulou Margarine, Clara Pacotte, Laura Porter, Alan Schmalz, Tai Shani, Benjamin Valenza
Group Exhibition organized by Media Naranja, Marseilles France
December 1st, 2018 - January 5th, 2019
From the construction of the Impériale street during the Second Empire to the Euroméditerrannée project at the end of the 1990s, the République street in Marseille has been the subject of successive and inefficient real estate speculations. Today, lonely spaces whose functions remain pending constitute the landscape of this district which still aspires to an economic and symbolic added value.
Media Naranja considers these places as sophisticated urban wastelands because of what they reveal trough their display windows and their ghostly presences.
These spaces, unoccupied, left, desolate, induce different forms of feelings about their presence for passers-by and inhabitants alike: between indifference, questions, enthusiasm as much as consternation, or weariness. In the heart of the renovated Haussmann district, they also give rise to a form of desire regarding to the activities that could take place there These spaces without obvious imperative to be occuped, define the architectural, urban and speculative landscape of the district as an artificial decoration.
Indeed, from a formal point of view, many of these spaces have the same painted wooden panels reproducing the architectural pattern of the stone facades of these haussmannian buildings.
Moreover, we call them ornemental setting because they have no specific activity other than the function of conveying an economic ideology of a luxurious neighbourhood.
Faced with the strangeness of these spaces and their economic predictions, Media Naranja chooses to define new ones by setting up in one of them in order to make it effective. We believe that it is necessary to re-appropriate these places politically through the implementation of early tactics.
« We need to make the weak stories stronger and the strong stories weaker » says Donna Haraway who introduced the term “speculative fabulation”. Indeed, it is through the elaboration of new narratives that we can define potentialities and increase them beyond a dominant story.
Our fabulation identifies this space as a terrain where fluid and intertwined living forms can grow, whether organic, artificial, indefinite or unknown.