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A Monument Of The City To Build
Phase 1 – 2021

In collaboration with Azadeh E.Zaghi

 

EN

A monument of the city to build is an ongoing long-term pedagogical and socially-engaged project realised in collaboration with artist Azadeh E. ZAghi. The purpose of the project is to present the concepts of theright to the city, the right to public space, residentship, and responsibility to the children and young adults of Gothenburg through a series of pedagogical workshops and events.

Placing an emphasis on intercultural meetings, the project aims to engage culturally diverse groups of children and young adults in the ongoing discussion on the right to the city, to empower them, and to help them see themselves as capable of demanding a better environment to live in. The participants engage in critical discussion in which they are encouraged to share their stories and to reflect on their lived experience in the city, while translating this conversation into a collaborative artwork. Manipulating photographs of Gothenburg collected via Google Maps, the participants create their own images and proposals of the city they want Gothenburg to become – creating a monument to the future instead of the past. In parallel, the project is mapping the public perception of the city.

The project draws from a number of theoretical sources, such as the works Henri Lefebvre, Mark Purcell, and David Harvey to synthesise a comprehensive and multifaceted understanding of the right to the city. This understanding forms the basis of the workshops and informs the participants’ discussions. Challenging the neoliberal paradigm, urban space is approached as common space shaped by collective action, rather than the domain of isolated individuals.

The right to the city is a topic that is increasingly popular in public discourse and has become a core issue among activists, academics, and politicians across the globe. Additionally, the right to the city is fundamentally intertwined with the struggle for democracy in the urban public sphere. However, young adults and children, as current and future residents of cities, are often left out of these conversations; particularly those who come from marginalised groups. In opening up the discussion, Zaghi and Mirjahani attempt to reorient decision-making power away from large institutions, from state and capital, and into the hands of the city’s inhabitants. Through the conversation about the right to the city, they create a space in which children and young adults can train in participation, responsibility, and critical thinking: the fundamental skills of active democratic citizens.

 

SE

A Monument Of The City To Build  är ett processdrivet socialt engagerade konstnärligt projekt initierat av Azadeh E Zaghi och Reyhaneh Mirjahani, kring frågor om “rätten till staden”, det offentliga rummet, rätt att bo och ansvarighet genom en serie pedagogiska processer, evenemang och utställningen som format. Projektet syftar till att engagera de boende i Göteborg, med tonvikt på dialogiska möten, och för att förstå skillnader i respons, engagemang och konversationer när samma innehåll presenteras runt omkring i staden. Denna infallsvinkel används med förhoppningen om att kunna motverka marginaliseringen av Göteborg.

Genom metoden pedagogisk konstnärligt integration syftar detta projekt till att uppmuntra de boende till att delta i den pågående diskussionen kring “rätten till staden” och bidra till att de ser sig själva som förmögna till att kräva en bättre miljö för sig själva och för de runt omkring i staden och för Göteborg som stad, genom att berätta sina historier och reflektera kring sin levda erfarenhet i staden, samtidigt som denna utforskning översätts till ett kollaborativt konstverk.

Projektet finansieras av Göteborg Stad i samarbete med Blåstället Konsthall, Hammarkullsskolan, Dômen konstskola, Navet Bergsjön, Göteborgs botaniska trädgård, Allas Ateljé, Konstepidemin och Kulturrådet.

 

Exhibitions:

Flora Rika, Botaniska Trädgården, Gothenburg, July-August 2021
Artists’ Corner, Konstepidemin, Gothenburg, June 2021

 

Pedagogical events:

Allas Ateljé, Bergsjön, July 2021
Dômen konstskola, Konstepidemin, Gothenburg, May 2021
Blåstället, Hammarkullen, Gothenburg, January 2021