Category Archives: city

Leipzig Protest Atlas

Mapping project and publication, together with Reinhard Krehl, niko.31 (Leipzig) and Jan Wenzel, Spector Books (Leipzig), Dec. 2004 to Jun. 2005

»As soon as you apply geographical, economic or demographic detail to a map you become political, because you necessarily make a choice,« writes the cartographer Philippe Rekacewicz. Maps have always been instruments of spatial control. They compile knowledge about a territory that is usually clearly demarcated; they serve orientation and are the prerequisite for certain actions in this space. Against this background, we created an atlas of local protest movements in Leipzig.

From a spatial perspective, urban protest is a form of action that generally does not occupy a space of its own, but rather penetrates into the spaces of the others, the rulers, thus suspending all rules that otherwise apply there. The Leipzig Protest Atlas documents the spatial and time-related dimensions of local protest actions. It marks symbolic protest locations on two overview maps, illustrates the connections between places and specific protest actions on small-scale maps, and visualizes the choreography of protest events.

The publication comprises 144 pages with 6 fold-out maps and texts by Dieter Rink and Kai Vöckler among others.

»We are the City!« Cultural networks and the construction of urban spaces in Leipzig

Ph.D. project: Oct. 2002 to Oct. 2007

The book »Wir sind die Stadt!« is based on an ethnographic community study inspired by the research methodology of the Chicago School. As a member of the art projects niko.31 and general panel I observed the spatial practices of artists, independent book publishers, radio activists, designers, architects as well as people operating »off-spaces« or music clubs in the city of Leipzig.

The aim was to investigate these cultural worker's spaces and their influences on the city’s self-perception. Against the background of the official staging of Leipzig as a city of slumbering potential (»Sleeping Beauty« motif), I developed »thick descriptions« of places of pop culture and contemporary art that show how spatial arrangements have become both, objects and methods of protest cultures. The book thus sounds out the potentials of urban forms of critique in contemporary cities.