Walking City: 21st Century Mirrorworlds remix


^ Comparison of YRM/Tom Carden’s  ‘Destinations’ (Detail) with Ron Herron/Archigram’s ‘Walking City’ (reversed out-of-black by me)

Congratulations to Tom Carden on getting a piece selected for the architecture section of The Royal Academy’s prestigious Summer Exhibition this past year. It’s called ‘Destinations’ and is a beautiful simulation of passenger movements through an airport terminal over a day. 

Many things notable about this: that an artifact that is a simulation of flow through architecture is included in a celebration of the aesthetics of architecture, that these complex simulations of ‘people weather’ are not only working tools of large-scale architectural practice, but also now boundary objects that communicate to wider audiences, and that as David Gelertner put in his mid-90’s book MirrorWorlds, that now we have the power to make magic mirrors of what might be, how does that inform our actions – as architects, designers and citizens.

I was fortunate to sit down and have a chat with Tom this week in London, where we talked about simulation, visualisation, cities and agency and if those sorts of fields fascinate you, too, I recommend subscribing to his blog, Random Etc.

The other thing that struck me about Tom’s image was it’s superficial resemblence to Ron Herron’s iconic Walking City – appealing, as it’s an image of that peculiar 21st century transient city: the airport and it’s inhabitants – walking…

See also: Rodcorp’s "life in the walking city" [via Anne G. to whom I apologise for the non-ironic utopian, technological, democratic discourses I hope she keeps reading 😉

2 thoughts on “Walking City: 21st Century Mirrorworlds remix

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