In Transit

"In Transit" (2001) is an Artist-in-Residence project by Michael Pinsky.

In Transit

Wiretap 7.08: In Transit; photo: Jan Sprij

One measures the distances that effectively separate two regions of a city, distances that may have little relation with the physical distance between them.

Guy Debord

People who live in cities have a unique sense of distance in relation to space, especially in relation to the increased pace of urban living. For them, the metropolitan space, as well as their sense of its accessibility, tends to be defined not by how far away destinations lie but how long it takes to reach that destination, whatever mode of transport they choose to employ. As such, distant locations may seem close due to their proximity to transportation systems or to certain short cuts, and vice versa. These perceptions of space can be seen to traverse a city, providing an immaterial network of 'mental notes' which synchronise with the systems of communication, utilities and electronics which form the veins of the metropolitan body.

Michael Pinsky's new work explores this situation by creating maps that alter conventional perceptions of urban time and space. Taking the combined roles of urban planner, activist, researcher, resident and artist, Pinsky's maps are created by his own journeys through the city, as he attempts to conjoin differing combinations of networks as a hybrid navigational tools. Noting the resultant travel times as a form of plotting device, the maps are then constructed to show points in time rather than space. They re-organise the city's form, and our understanding of it, in terms of a temporal as well as geographic dimension.

In the gallery, videos will portray the artist's journeys at high speed, whilst the large-scale maps will be displayed on the gallery's walls. The maps connect the interior of the gallery space with their urban context, proposing a different understanding of a city's physicality, and perhaps reflecting the increasingly speed-based mode of a contemporary Westernised existence.

This project was realized through the EMARE 2001 AiR, and in collaboration with V2_Lab.

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