London Dust – Photographs
London Dust is a series of photographs that trace the rapid architectural transformation of the City of London. The photographs continue Blees Luxemburg’s research into urban aesthetics and the representation of contemporary cities, including New York, London and Dakar. Reflecting on the ‘lumicity’ of each location, the work projects the hidden tensions and desires that affect the shaping of the future city.
Blees Luxemburg is part of Theatrum Mundi/Global Street, an international interdisciplinary research project directed by Richard Sennett and Saskia Sassen which brings architects, urban planners and artists together to re-imagine public space. Writing on photographs in this project, Sassen comments: ‘One version of “making presence” is a particular condition in even the densest city that has the visual character of under-utilized space… They are the terrains vague or vacant grounds that enable many residents to connect with their city at a time of rapid changes. This is a making of presence’ (Sassen 2011).
Photographs from London Dust were featured in Photomonitor with an essay by Blees Luxemberg (2012). Selected works were shown in the group exhibition ‘New Narrative’, Digital Art Center, Taipei (2011); and ‘Dérives et des Rêves’, Château d’Oiron, Oiron (2012), which brought together the utopian architectural works of Archigram, OMA, Coop Himmelblau etc. in relation to artists’ representation of future cities.
Owen Hatherley discussed Blees Luxemburg’s work for The Photographers’ Gallery blog (2012). Blees Luxemburg participated in the ‘bkult.de’ debate on contemporary architecture, a forum of the Bundestiftung Baukultur, Germany (www.bkult.de). She also presented her research at the University of Frankfurt (2013).
‘London Dust’ was presented in a solo exhibition at the Galerie Dominique Fiat, Paris (2013). Blees Luxemburg’s work was also the focus of a talk between the philosophers Jean-Luc Nancy and Alex Düttmann in Paris in November 2013.