a project by Andreas Angelidakis
curated by Maria Cristina Didero
at GloriaMaria Gallery
opened 18th April 2012
during the ultimate torrent of objects
that is the Salone del Mobile in Milano
The exhibition consists of a short firm, video fragments, architectural drawings of an unproposed home, a 3D print that carried it’s own shadow, and various furniture made from transport scraps. Oh and a site-specific domesticated mountain of stuff.
Texts Andreas Angelidakis, Maria Cristina Didero
3D animation and drawings Sotiris Vasiliou
Video editing and additional animation AA
3D printing Sculpteo using a zPrinter 650
Special thanks: Angelo Plessas, Adelina von Furstenberg, Priscilla Tea, Fabrizio Meris, Alexandra Syriou, FedEx and the eternal genius of M. Ward
Andreas Angelidakis is an architect who maintains an experimental practice in Athens, Greece, a studio involved in building, designing and speculating the contemporary ecosystem of screens and landscapes at the intersection of two systems: Art and Architecture, Virtual and Real, Building and Nature, Ruin and Construction.
The medium Angelidakis uses is always some type of inhabitation, of buildings and spaces. These take the form of videos, computer animation, 3D prints and actual functional space. In recent years he has designed online communities, exhibition spaces (Athens Biennal, MUSAC, Fargfabriken), while writing, blogging and teaching.
Domesticated Mountain is a new project by Andreas Angelidakis narrating the story of citizens grewing up in an undefined suburbia. Their parents came there to avoid the noise and the pollution, chasing a post-fordist dream of life with a back yard and a double driveway, their home closer to nature. They had visions of mountains but now suburbia was just bundle of credit-card ruins, the post-fordist dream turned into neo-liberal nightmare. People never stopped buying, some of them forgot to throw away, or to pay. Now they could buy in their sleep, on a trip to Egypt, riding a camel, browsing the latest bargains on Uniqlo, lets get another cashmere blend sweater honey, even in the sweltering heat.
The internet changed the way they consumed, their palaces of shopping lay empty. Shopping malls were the Campo Marzio of the standard delivery generation. Nobody went there anymore, nobody knew what to do there. The suburbs became endless scrolls on our google earth, areas of continuous texture mapping, delivery addresses that matched the billing address, you only needed to remember your three digit security code.
Sometimes they forgot what they ordered within the hour of buying it, and sometimes bought it again. By the time it arrived nobody knew what it was or who had wanted it, so they put it in the pile of the other boxes waiting to be opened. The pile grew larger, soon they used the boxes to sit on, at first it was strange but the view was great. They fell asleep on their iPad screens, and things kept arriving. Before they knew it they were living on a mountain of purchases. This was the architecture of logistics, the post capitalist crisis of over consumption, the continuous flow of unnecessary acquisitions. They liked it here, so they decided to make their home, on the pile of impulse shopping and forgotten returns. Their home was a domesticated mountain.
Domesticated Mountain targets the suburban home as the traditional vehicle for an architectural manifesto.
Positioning the home in an expanded notion of suburbia, i.e. The internet, the suburban home is the accumulation of all the things we do online, and so it needs to be redifined from scratch.
Redefining what makes our suburban home in the time of facebook and twitter and tumblr and pintrest, suggests examining the primitive state of a house.
The primitive state of such a suburban home is a truck of boxes being deposited on the sidewalk by a transport van.
These boxes contain the house.
(the house is a readymade, rented from an online agency of houses, picked from a list according to specifications. In this internet suburbia no more houses are designed, because enough readymades exist already)
This initial primitive state of a house arriving at it’s location as a set of transport boxes is a condition that continues throughout the life of this house, and perhaps becomes it’s death.
The inhabitants constantly need more products to satisfy their ever expanding needs (Do we need a raw almond puree maker? Yes we do).
But to be exact, they do not need the almond puree maker to make almond puree, they need it to satisfy their need of needing it. They just want to buy it, but not necessarily own it or use it.
So the inhabitants of the house go through evolutionary stages. First they move all their stuff from their previous house, then they continuously purchase more stuff on the internet, but gradually become so saturated with browsing and buying that they forget what they bought. Boxes of bargains arrive at the house but nobody remembers buying them, because they have already discovered another site with better bargains, faster browsing, cheaper shipping.
This compulsive internet shopping is part of the inhabitants growing list of compulsive browsing behaviors. Every night they get lost in psychogeographic drifts down the jpeg avenues of tumblr, scrolling down cartesian city grids of thumbnails, making their situationist derives by caressing their ipad screens. In these derives, they find everything: products to want, and buildings they like and archive material to reblog and bearded guys to make friends with. They find objects to order and have sent home and information to fill up their blogs and clothes to wear while browsing for more.
Soon they are saturated. They have seen all the images that exist on the internet, they have browsed all the bargain bins many times over, but they need more things to scroll through, sometimes not even looking at what they are looking at, just caressing an scrolling. They dont need to buy products anymore, they just add them to their dreamboxes, mark them as favorites, leave them rotting in the shopping cart in case they need something to want later on.
Slowly they realize that their home has become a mountain of things, stacked boxes of almond puree makers and organic ironing kits. And while this accumulating was going on, they got saturated with accumulating, with buying, with owning.
Now it was enough to just click on something and it had already partially been consumed. Consumed enough so that you could just scroll down to the next consumable image of product or information or person.
Had this evolutionary process of boxed products reached it’s post-capitalist conclusion? Was it enough to just “consume” online without ever buying anything? Would the suburban house, along with its mountain of objects just evaporate into an ephemeral scroll up to the suburban sky?
No more products? no more buildings? no more images? no more real people? just a endless scroll of gaussian blurriness, a slow vertical drift into our internet suburbia.