• Note from

    the Editors

    After the dream they set out in search of that city;

    they never found it, but they found one another; they

    decided to build a city like the one in the dream.

    Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities

     

    The impetus for this issue was born out one of those conversations that take place in the city – during one of those moments where amidst the constant cacophony of the city, we find an other with whom we can share a moment of imagined quiet, and in the imagined quiet, allow errant thoughts to be formed into words and carelessly uttered.

     

    “Do you ever feel like you’re besieged by an endless precession1 of images, imploring you like a belligerent Greek chorus to escape to some other place, a place with yellow earth or red sorghum - or even Chengdu - any place other than where you are?” inquired she, give or take a word or two, and allowing for the possibility that she used words other than these.

     

    “Well, yes,” said we.

     

    In soliciting submissions, and by committing, with as much diligence as we could muster, these submissions to the printed word and the infinite page of the internet, we have perhaps flattered ourselves into thinking that our friend’s words, most likely accidentally arrived at, might be deserving of a more enduring form, and a more ample investigation. Whether this is the case, of course, is up to each reader to decide.

     

    The same could be said of cities.

     

    The city, as Barthes took pains to point out2, is a semiotic space. Though produced by and reproducing particular historical and social realities3, cities, much to the chagrin of longsuffering urban planners, exceed the utility of their economic and political functions4. In physical terms, we inhabit space, but the realities we inhabit are written by the meanings we attribute to these spaces. In this way, the city always means more than it means to.

     

    For those with economic means, the play of signifiers that construct the city as a text is that which beseeches us to escape, as well as that from which we seek to escape. For those who lack such means, the same signifiers seduce us to escape in/to the city. There are as many cities as there are people who inhabit them, for each person inhabits a city of their own making. Even as we seek to escape from disagreeable realities, the means at our disposal can only be imagined in terms of a play of signs, from which we cannot escape.

     

    From what then, precisely (protest the historians), are we trying to escape, and where then, no less precisely (inquire the cartographers), might we escape to?

     

    Anywhere, other than where we are. For in the play of signifiers that construct the city, escape is simply a privileged space that is somewhere ‘other.’ Perhaps somewhere where the other is, or somewhere where we can be other than ourselves.

     

    Perhaps somewhere imagined, where a fanciful conversation with an other can take place. The condition of escapism, after all, is not a directive as to where to inhabit, but how to inhabit.

     

    We would like to thank our contributors for so diligently nurturing such spaces of possibility in the pages that follow.

     

    [1] Baudrillard, Jean. Simulacra and Simulation (1981)

    [2] Barthes, Roland. Semiology and the Urban (1986)

    [3] Lefebvre, Henri. The Production of Space. (1991)

    [4] Barthes. Ibid.

     

     

    Zhou Tingfeng

  • 编者前言

    梦醒之后,他们计划出发去找寻那座城市;他们从未找到,但是他们找到了彼此;他们决定建造一座如梦想中一般的城市。

    伊塔洛•卡尔维诺 《看不见的城市》

     

    做这一期杂志的动力来源于一次在城市里的谈话——在城市特有的持续不断的刺耳噪音中,我们发现能够与彼此分享一刻想象中的宁静,而这幻想出的宁静,使漂浮不定的思绪凝结成随口说出的词句。

     

    “你是否曾感到自己被连续不断运动1的图像所包围,像一支好斗的古希腊歌队一样恳求着你去逃到什么别的地方,一个有黄土地或者红高粱的地方——或者甚至成都——一个任何并非此处的地方?”她如此问道,原话大致如此,也可能并非一字不差。

     

     “嗯,当然了。”我们回答。

     

    我们承诺尽最大努力来征收作品,在对印刷品或者无尽网络征求过程中,我们也许自我陶醉于思考这位朋友的话,很可能意外认为这番话值得一个更持久的载体,以及一番更充分的调查。当然,情况是否果真如此,取决于每一位读者。

     

    这同样适用于城市。

     

    城市,正如巴特不辞辛劳地所指出的一样2,是一个符号学的空间。虽然城市是通过重建特定的历史社会现实而被创造出的3,却更像是由备受长久煎熬的城市规划者们的懊悔之作,城市的效用超出了其本身所具备的经济与政治功能4。就物理意义而论,我们居住于空间中,但是这个事实是由我们赋予这些空间的含义所书写的。从这个角度来说,城市总是包含着超出其应有的更多意味。

     

    对于那些具备经济手段的人,将城市构建为文本的能指上演着一出恳求着我们逃离的戏,而这也正是我们逃离的原因。对于那些缺乏如此手段的人,同样的能指引诱着我们留在或者去往城市。有多少人居住其中,就有多少城市,因为每个人都栖身于自己所建的城市之中。尽管我们试图逃离不合心意的现实,但是我们的处置手段只能以符号游戏的方式进行想象,而我们无法从这其中逃离。

     

    那么,准确地来说(抗议历史学家),我们在试图逃离什么?而同样准确地来说(询问制图员),我们能够逃到哪里去

     

    呢?

     

    任何地方,除了我们所在之地。因为在构建城市的能指的这出戏里,逃离不过是一个特定的“除此之外的”时空。也许是别人所在的地方,也许是我们能成为别人而不是自己的地方。

     

    也许是想象之地,一个与人进行异想天开的交谈的地方。归根结底,这种空想的条件并不是一个该居住于何处的指示,而是该如何居住。

     

    我们想感谢撰稿者们,他们在以下篇章中的勤勉滋养着充满可能性的空间。

     

    [1]《模仿和拟像》(1981)法国哲学家让·鲍德里亚

    [2]《符号学与城市》 (1986)

    [3] 罗兰·巴特 《空间的生产》 (1991) 昂利•列斐伏尔

    [4] 罗兰·巴特,出处同上

     

     

    周挺峰

    Translated by Molly Liu 刘魔力

逃避主义

流泥 第三期

CONCRETE FLUX
ISSUE III

Escapism

 

JIANG BIN 江彬

 

Re: call for submissions

for issue 3 :)

回复:为第三期投稿的邀请

Zhu Dianqiong 朱殿琼

 

Dream Party

梦局

Gene-George Earl

 

Escape from

the Enclaves

逃离飞地

GAO LING 高灵

 

Big Mist

大雾

Jacob Dreyer

 

Northern Road

北方的路

Michael Eddy

 

Big Mix

大杂院

Yuan Fuca 源富察

 

Soy Sauce Noodles

酱油拉面

Map Office

 

Invisible Islands

逃避主义

Alessandro Rolandi

 

Inception

开端

MUKTA DAS

 

Sound (E)scape

Francois Dey

 

Hard Heart

Hu Moran 胡默然

 

打捞冰块的孩子

Acknowledgments

 

Concrete Flux Issue III: Escapism was produced through collaboration and the hard work of the Concrete Flux collective:

Tom Baxter, Aaron Fox-Lerner, Yuan Fuca, Emma Karasz, Kendra Schaefer, Solveig Suess, Zhou Tingfeng in Beijing and Sophie Dyer in Berlin.

 

Solveig and Sophie cooperated on this issue's design long distance. The design of this issue was impacted by the nature
of their cooperation and the strength, or more often, weakness of the Internet connection. When Sophie worked, Solveig slept; when Solveig worked, Sophie slept.

 

It would not have been possible without the additional help of
our friends and fellow enthusiasts who helped along the way.

 

 

《流泥 第三期:逃避主义》由以下《流泥》作者通力合作完成: Tom Baxter, Aaron Fox-Lerner, Yuan Fuca, Emma Karasz, Kendra Schaefer, Solveig Suess, Zhou Tingfeng in Beijing and Sophie Dyer in Berlin

 

Sophie与Solveig远程合作对本期杂志进行设计。他们合作关系的性质与网络信号有多强,或者更多情况下, 网络信号有多弱对本期杂志设计 的性质产生巨大影响。当Sophie工作时, Solveig在睡觉; 当Sophie入 睡时, Solveig在工作。

 

此外,朋友与热心人们的协助使得这本 杂志得以最终呈现。

Concreteflux.com

 

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