Los Angeles (1999) by Andreas Gursky (1955- )

Went to the Tate Modern today with the kids (they have brilliant things to do for families there). But couldn’t help be struck by the latest exhibition in the Turbine Hall about global urbanisation. The stats are scary – but inescapable. This is how the official blurb describes the show:

 

Global Cities looks at the changing faces of ten dynamic international cities: Cairo, Istanbul, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Mumbai, São Paulo, Shanghai and Tokyo. Exploring each city through five thematic lenses – speed, size, density, diversity and form – the exhibition draws on data originally assembled for the 10th International Architecture Exhibition at the 2006 Venice Biennale. This unique show presents existing films, videos and photographs by more than 20 artists and architects to offer subjective and intimate interpretations of urban conditions in all ten cities.

  • In 2007, for the first time in history, ONE out of TWO people on earth lives in a city (ie 3 billion)
  • In 1900, 10% of the world’s population lived in cities. By 2050, UN estimates suggest that 75% will be in cities.
  • ONE out of THREE city-dwellers lives in a SLUM (ie nearly 1 billion people)
  • Cities produce 75% of the world’s CARBON EMISSIONS

Copan, São Paolo (2002) by Andreas Gursky (1955- )

So, get used to it guys. It’s the future…

 

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Following on from your blog I would like to propose a new (not at all serious) end time teaching that I hope will raise me millions of dollars from my unfortunate brothers and sisters (normally in North America) who love such dodgy teaching. I may have floated this theory to you before, but here it goes again.
    My theory goes along these lines…
    The Bible starts off in a garden but ends with the vision of a city, so, de facto, cetrius paribus, ad hoc, ad nauseum… and all that…
    we should be encouraging the trends you have noted above, not bemoaning them. Urbanisation is just one more step closer to the rapture my friend – a sign God’s city is appraoching, and so go out, pollute all you want so as to put our groaning world out of its misery – and while you’re driving your 4×4 to the gas station you can drop my cheque off in the post so that I can continue to channel my inspired wisdom to you over the airwaves…

  2. PS see what I did with the Latin phrases there… I like to be joined up with all your blog pieces! I bet you could never guess that I didn’t have your classical education, but rather came through the comprehensive secondary system.

  3. Ross, something can’t be ad hoc and ad nauseum at the same time, but then again, I didn’t have MM’s classical education either…

    Here’s another one from Ron White:
    I was sitting naked on my beanbag eating Cheetos in front of my TV when this televangelist (TE) comes on.
    TE: Are you lonely?
    RW: Yes.
    TE: Do you think you’ve wasted your entire life accomplishing nothing?
    RW: Yes!
    TE: Are you sitting naked on your beanbag eating Cheetos in front of the TV?
    RW: Gosh, this guy’s good!
    TE: Do you feel the urge to send me a cheque for $1,000?
    RW: Close. Phew, for a moment there, I thought he was talking about me…

  4. That had nothing to do with MM’s post, did it? Thanx for the heads up, MM. Will drag AA to the Tate Modern this weekend, before the exhibition closes! Gursky rocks.

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