A feel of rhythm and an aroma of sweat overcome my senses on this Wednesday evening as the popping sound of wooden tails and the connection of metal trucks to metal coping takes place. It's about time, it's about space. The production of urban bodily senses. Balancing, moving and responding while seeing, hearing and touching architecture.
There is concrete, asphalt and metal. There is some brick and wood. Every once in a while there is a tree. It is no mystery why the tree is there: someone planned it, just like everything is planned – and then falls apart. To be oppositional, appropriative of the city, irrational in organization. It was in the streets that spontaneity expressed itself – in an area of society not occupied by institutions – social space has assumed new meaning.
A curb is an obstacle until you grind across it. A wall is but ledge until you drop off it. A cement bank is a useless slab of concrete until you shred it. Benches, stairs, banks and smooth pavements. Citizens use some of these elements every day, almost to the point of excess, but still have no appreciation for the structure itself. Most people think handrails are for those with mobility problems. Christian Hosoi says they are for ollie nose grinds.
Text written with extracted quotes by Henri Lefebvre, Chris Carnel, Sarah Thornton, Mark Mardon, Ron Allen and articles by Thrasher and Skateboarder Magazine. From “Skateboarding, Space and the City: Architecture and the body” by Iain Borden.
Ian Waelder (b. 1993) is an artist based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. In his work he explores suburban culture from memory. Working with photography, sound, text or sculpture, he collects experiences from his environment interested in researching the traces and marks left by the individual. Welder has received the Full Contact Prize 2013 at the SCAN International Photography Festival in Tarragona and has shown his work at spaces such as L21 Gallery, Salón and La Casa Encendida. Currently he's part of the class by Peter Fischli at Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main.