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We are building this city moment by moment

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Psychogeography - a radio take [07 Apr 2012|07:35am]


Walking with Attitude

Ian Marchant's walk around Paris in the Situationist footsteps of Guy Debord was a real hoot

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Psychogeography - an orbital take [06 Apr 2012|10:04am]

Road to nowhere: The M25 celebrates its 25th birthday

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Psychogeography - A Canterbury take [04 Apr 2012|01:46pm]

The marvellous Marlowe - and other tales of Canterbury

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Psychogeography - an arty take [02 Apr 2012|06:25pm]

Ken Okiishi’s Manhattan Transfer

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Psychogeography - A Prague take [31 Mar 2012|11:11am]


Book review: Prague, I See a City…

A Czech writer's alternative guide to Prague


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Here be dragons [27 Sep 2011|08:40am]


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Psychogeography - a dance take [17 Sep 2011|04:51am]

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How Far`is Here? [15 Sep 2011|04:14pm]

Where is psychogeography?

Well there is no point asking “What is psychogeography?”. You can find the answer to that anywhere. It will be concise, exact and detailed. It will also be gobbledygook.   Isn’t gobbledygook a fine word? Gobbledygook, psychobabble and pretentious crap are the technical languages of psychogeography.

So let’s sidestep the ‘What’ and get all whimsical and ask ‘Where’ instead.

Psychogeography seems to be a small ghetto, badly served by transport links, with no good pubs or cafes. That’s misleading though. Like Skegness advertising itself as ‘bracing’ psychogeography does itself no favours. Because in reality it isn’t a little place at all. It’s a bloody great continent.

It contains Charlotte Bronte’s Yorkshire, Jerome K  Jerome’s Thames and Ian Rankin’s Edinburgh. It’s got Bladerunner’s LA, Woody Allen’s Manhattan and Casablanca’s, err, Casablanca.  On its television you’ll see The Apprentice’s London,  Taggerts’ Glasgow and Buffy’s Sunnydale.

It is anywhere, in fact, where the sense of place matters as much as character or plot. 
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Psychogeography - a banker's take. [15 Sep 2011|05:10am]

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Psychogeography: A Nigerian take [14 Sep 2011|06:41am]

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Psychogeography, a welsh take [12 Sep 2011|12:52pm]

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Maybe swim a mile down the Nile [18 May 2011|09:26am]


Some places are special. Some places resonate. Some places are cool. Some places are just special.


Just as there are three way people get to greatness so there are three ways places get to specialness.


Some places are born special. The Grand Canyon, Capadocia, deserts.


Some places achieve specialness through years, decades, centuries of being made special. The Pyramids, Wayland’s Smithy, cities.


And some places have specialness thrust upon them. An event, cataclysmic or euphoric, marks it out. The Somme, Woodstock, parks.


Parks? Parks! Well do you know how hard it is to think of places that are special because of euphoria? Euphoria doesn’t even sound like a real word.


Anybody out there have any suggestions?

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Adam Kayalar [07 May 2011|05:12pm]


You drive up a small mountain road and then turn off onto a rough mountain track. You park the car and descend down steps cut into a sheer rock face two thousand years ago and only repaired in small patches, where absolutely necessary, where otherwise crampons and ropes would be needed. You can see the immaculate, perfectly round holes cut into the rock where more sensible peoples placed posts and handrails. Fifteen minutes of falling down a mountain in instalments and you come to a ledge, about twenty foot wide, which seems to you now like the firmest Terra Firma ever.


And cut into the cliff above you are the Roman reliefs, celebrating the dead. Warriors, mothers, families, hunters, children. Carved into the inaccessible rock face by people who must have cared as deeply as the crevices borrowing their way into the mountain side.


The sign near the car park tells you this was the site of an ancient death cult, but in the glorious sunlight with a view of a valley cutting its way down to the sea it is the least dark and Gothic place ever. It acknowledges death in the face of life and celebrates life in the face of death.

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Rough Cilicia [03 May 2011|06:30am]


In London History crowds you. It jostles you, knocks your drinking arm and spills your pint. In Oxford Street Celtic hordes push you out of the way, Norman policeman move you on and Saxon shop keepers ignore you. Shakespeare edits the local gazette, Dr Johnson corrects your language at school and Pepys sells you slightly charred parmesan cheese. It burns and rises and crashes and burns. And rises again.


Here, in Rough Cilicia, History is older, more tired. It waits for you to find it. It camps in the mountains, enjoying the view. It lies in the sea, letting the waves wash away the dirt of millennia. It sits by rivers and under cliffs and in the cool of caves. It watches you.  It remembers Cleopatra’s beauty and Alexander’s ambition. Hittites, Persians and Romans all passed through, darkening the bath towels.


It lets you pass by without troubling you. But if you do stop to pass the time of day it rewards you with the hospitality of strangers. It makes you comfortable. It entertains you and then helps you on your way, leaving it as you found it. Untouched. Untouchable.


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“…the absence of the object becomes a presence one can feel” [03 May 2011|05:42am]


The Alma, a pub in Harrow Weald, was an important point in my young adulthood. A number of emotionally significant scenes were played out there. It was my regular, my local. It was a meeting point. It is now a block of flats. Or rather it was demolished and a block of flats was built were it stood. Whenever I pass those flats (which isn’t often now that I live in Turkey) I feel there is something missing. A hole exists, even though there is a very solid building there. Two things now occupy the same space. A block of flats and the memory of a pub.


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The Walk to Work [29 Apr 2011|07:08am]


I start my Walk to Work walking the dirt track that leads the back way out of our site with wet, marsh land either side. It’s very much like walking across a bridge.  We basically live in a lake. The land has been reclaimed but, like the sea will take back Holland, the dessert Las Vegas and civilisation Essex, the lake will eventually take back our house.


The road gets better but the surroundings stay the same until the land rises a couple of feet to meet the main road which marks where the lake lands finish.


This is where I’d stop for the first cigarette if I smoked, or raise a hip flask if I wasn’t going into work. Instead I just stop and look back. The land is flat and marshy with the square blocks of housing sites laid out like fields. Its stretches out in front of me to the actual lake, the river delta and the sea. We live in a lake.


Global warning is going to fuck us, big time.


This land was poor farmland thirty years ago. It was passed off to unfavoured sons and daughters as hard work and virtually useless. Then somebody came up with the idea of building holiday homes here, right next to the sea. The land became worth a few bob. And much less hard work for the unfavoured sons and daughters.


The road is more road like now and the fields either side are full of strawberries and of migrant workers picking strawberries.  It leads through the village. The village is a couple of general shops, a barbers and a café where old men sit and drink coffee all day. They move with the shade, sitting on one side of the road in the morning and the other side in the afternoon, like human sundials.


The strawberry fields give way to lemon trees and the village road meets up with the main coastal road – the D400.


The D400 is busy with trucks going from East to West and back again. It runs through the middle of the narrow strip of flat land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Taurus Mountains. Walking it you can’t see the mountains over the low lying hills and you can’t see the sea because it is a mile or so away, but you can feel the presence of both hemming you in. To get to school I head east, towards the point where the mountains and sea part company and Rough Cilicia becomes Smooth Cilicia. Behind me the Mountains and the Sea eventually meet and the D400 becomes one of those coastal roads with a sheer drop on one side and a wall of rock on the other so beloved of car show presenters.


The walk to work passes four (count’em 4!) cemeteries. That tells me something but it tells it to me so quietly I can’t hear it. This particular stretch also has a lot of woodwork workshops, a phrase which, like Edward Woodward, depends for survival on its vowels. With all the cemeteries you’d expect stone masons rather than carpenters. Come to think of it there is a stretch of the D400 not too far away where there is a concentration of marble masons. Perhaps they are just being discrete.


Just before the school is one last strawberry field. Pride of place in the field is a very neat hand-painted sign proclaiming the strawberries to be poisoned. Maybe that’s what the cemeteries were trying to tell me.

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posting a project on behalf of The Man From Icon... [18 Feb 2007|02:44pm]

a project from...


minimalism on the streets!****************

“Anyone can make a monochrome. Most of us probably have made one at some time or another, although we wouldn’t necessarily have recognised it. And we wouldn’t necessarily need to have made one, as most of the time we are already surrounded by ready-made monochromes of various shapes and sizes. The world is full of unintended, sometimes accidental, often temporary, and mostly unnoticed monochromes…Every city is a museum of the inadvertent monochrome”
David Batchelor, In bed with the monochrome.
From an Aesthetic point of view, Philosophy, Art and the Senses.
Edited by Peter Osborne. Serpent’s Tail, 2000

Send me a photo of found, ready-made monochrome from your city, town or village, along with details or where and when you found it plus any miscellaneous details you think are interesting. It could be an unused, painted over or papered over billboard or sign, side of a truck, fence round a construction site, side of a building, anything, any colour. The only rule is that you can’t have made it yourself.

send real stuff to
the man from icon, flat 3, 56 brunswick road, hove, bn3 1dh, uk
send digital stuff to
deadline: 30th june 2007 || download pdf of details here || documentation to all
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[02 Nov 2006|07:34pm]

Some lj-friends and I have created a new LJ community...


We're a lot like NaNoWriMo, but without the fancy website and dedicated to research writing instead of fiction.

Feel free to join us for National Research Writing Month, from Nov 1 - Nov 30. The goal of this endeavor is to offer encouragement to get stuff done, to basically partake in a community dedicated to BIC (Butt-in-chair) and complete whatever research writing tasks we have on hand.

We invite you to join us for this marathon of research writing if you have any reports, articles, a disseration, a thesis, or basically any non-fiction writing you need to complete.

Feel free to post notes in the community about what you are doing, daily word counts, and links to where we can find your progress.

Good Luck and Productive Writing!
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new here, new project [30 Sep 2006|12:27pm]

hi i just joined this community, and it looks amazing.

i'm running a project, anyone can take part....


We all have a personal identity with the city in which we live in or near too, weather its a favourite building, street or landmark, personal or unique experience, memory or event, or it's just that we have a love of where we grew up and each individual as their own social history with their home city.

To investigate this further I am calling for people to send me a personal visual representation of their home city in any medium through the post. This could include:
Found object
List of words
.....anything goes.

Each item that is sent to me will appear in an exhibition in February 2007 in Salford, England. Each persons name and location will appear next to the sent work.

If you would like to take part in this project by sending me an item please e-mail artyrach@hotmail.com for my postal address.
If you would like to send an item that you think will cost a lot to send i can pay you back for the postage once the item has arrived.

Thank you and i hope to hear from you.
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[30 Aug 2006|11:18pm]

Conflux . Sept 14–17 . Brooklyn, NYC

Conflux is the annual New York festival for contemporary psychogeography, the investigation of everyday urban life through emerging artistic, technological and social practice.

The Village Voice describes Conflux as a "network of maverick artists and unorthodox urban investigators… making fresh, if underground, contributions to pedestrian life in New York City, and upping the ante on today's fight for the soul of high-density metropolises."

Conflux events are free and open to the public. They include:

  • walks and tours
  • lectures, workshops, and panels
  • street games and tech-enabled expeditions
  • interactive performance
  • social / environmental research
  • public art installations
  • audio / video / film programs
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