02
Dec
07

Reflection time….and the elimination of the supermarket

I feel like my research has been traveling at a million miles and hour and I really need to stop and reflect on what I have done before I go any further.

My proposal states that I am currently looking at 3 non-places that have the most relevance to me, the motorway, the underground and the supermarket.  My intention is to keep narrowing it down until I am looking at just one.  With this in mind I feel I need to evaluate and eliminate at least one at this point in time.  The course is only one year and I really need to start focusing down.

The non-place that I feel has the least scope for fulfilling my projects intentions is the supermarket.  I think this is mainly because it is the odd one out for me.  It is a singular destination whereas the underground and the motorway (more often than not) lead to multiple destinations.  

The underground and the motorway share a similar characteristic in that the persons that are using the non-place are all in transit, they are in a space between spaces, this changes how the individual acts and reacts within non-place.  This particular premise does not so much apply to the supermarket, yes the supermarket is a transient space but in a different way to the motorway and the underground, these non-places more largely embody the true notion of transience.  I feel there is something more compelling and interesting about the individuals relationship with the motorway and the underground. 

I think I will be more successful in achieving my projects current intentions if I focus on one of these two non-places.  

Even though the motorway and the underground are intrinsically defined by a more literal definition of transit, I feel that the contrast between the different types of transience that these spaces impose on the individual is also quite interesting.  The underground is a very communal space where at times your personal space can be very much infringed upon as you squeeze into the cabin making the transition between traveler to passenger.  In contrast the motorway is probably the most anonymous of all non-places as you share the space, more often than not, in isolation, you travel through the space in your car that is your own ‘personal’ non-place in itself.  These forms of transit and their demands on the individual are the antithesis of each other, even though they would overally be categorised together.

Another contrast is that the motorway is a space of continuous transience, we always have access to it therefore the movement never stops.  The underground however, for a period every night does stop, the stations shut down and are inaccessible to the public.  I am interested in what happens to the non-place when the movement is removed, and what connotations this has on the space during this time.  The underground lends itself more aptly to this premise. 

The main problem with the underground is that gaining access for filming at the times of shut down could be an arduous task, mainly because of health and safety and heightened security, this could make it very difficult to film successfully within this space, especially if my intentions are quite specific.  I don’t want to take second best with my project, so I will have to see if what I want to do can be achieved without serious compromise.

Depending on how my research progresses will determine which non-place has be best scope for successfully fulfilling my project.  I like the anonymity of the motorway.  The idea of anonymity has always interested me and this has been evident within my research.  I don’t want to rule out the underground just yet but the motorway is looking like the front-runner at the moment, and time is going fast…….     

 

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