Everyone Loves to Watch Buildings Fall / Perth Institute of Contemporary Art / September 2016
The Welcome Collective will undertake the project Everyone Loves to Watch Buildings Fall as Artists in Residence at Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts between Septmeber and October 2016.
Through the manipulation of found footage video and the creation of concrete structures The Welcome Collective will rebuild failed utopian monuments. Beginning with the billowing dust and concrete rubble left behind after a building’s ruination, The Welcome Collective explores concrete’s brutal aesthetic and iconic significance in both wholeness and destruction.
The collective will virtually and physically re-imagine a past experience of mass-housing. Piecing together the rubble of dysfunctional domestic architecture, The Welcome Collective will re-animate iconic fallen structures through the simple act of reversing the found footage of collapsing buildings. Reversing video footage is a significant and delicate gesture which has been the locus of powerful works such as Mark Wallinger’s Angel (1997). A powerful anti-dote to the forward looking scope of modernism, the act of reversing subverts a fear of moving backwards, questioning the perceived necessity of progression. The devastating fall of architect Minoru Yamasaki’s World Trade Centre in New York came after the destruction of his earlier Pruitt Igoe residential developments whose demolition was also iconically caught on camera. There is something compelling and momentous about watching the collapse of a building whether disastrous or planned. This project aims to explore and utilise the attraction and horror we all have to the ruination of buildings while confronting a fear of regression.
Mass-housing is characterised by the sensation of concrete. It’s versatility and malleability makes it an ever attractive material for the architect. The combination of concrete structures and projected imagery is an exciting and compelling synthesis of material and movement. This project momentarily re-animates utopian architectural visions just long enough to re-consider their impact on the canon of domestic architecture.
Mass-housing is becoming a necessary solution to the growing population of major Australian cities despite the general public’s hesitant embrace of such solutions.