City and other policies 2017-2018: Geographies and Forms of Power (III) - Conferences and talks - Iratxe Jaio and Klaas van Gorkum, Blanca Pujals, Ariel Caine, Armina Pilav, Xabier Gantzarain | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián
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Conferences and talks

asier mendizabal, city and other policies

Photo: Fragment of "Izenburu gabe (izenburu gabe Kalero)", 2009, Asier Mendizabal, 

We are interested in taking –to nearby regions and spaces– the debate on historical and subordinate memories, on the relationship between regional violence and the inhabiting groups thereof, on the invisibility of the violence taking place and the difficulties which exist in terms of representing it. We have invited figures who take on –from their respective disciplines– the breakdown of hegemonic narratives on violence and who will help us to study the aforementioned as they pertain to the traces which exist in the architectural spaces of the Basque Country. Accompanying us will be Armina Pilav, Ariel Caine, Iratxe Jaio and Klaas van Gorkum, Hedoi Etxarte and Xabier Gantzarain. Apart from that, Gantzarain will be the moderator in the morning and Blanca Pujals in the round table of the afternoon.



10:00-10:15: Presentation 

10:15-11:00: Hedoi Etxarte. Language: EU. Translation: ES & EN.

Title: Violence, Memory, Public Space

Who do the town squares belong to? Which deceased people deserve a plaque? Why do we have to put sculptures in the middle of roundabouts? What is public space? What do Hannah Arendt, Walter Benjamin and Manuel Delgado think about these issues?

11:00-11:45: Jaio Iratxe + Klaas van Gorkum. Language: EU. Translation: ES & EN.

Title: The Stick and the Stone

The focus of our talk will be a stela, or commemorative monument, in the municipality of Urbina (Álava). It was built as a tribute to three German soldiers belonging to the Condor Legion during the Civil War. Since its construction, different ideologies have used it as a source of debate and it had undergone various modifications before its recent disappearance. We do not know what happened to it, but it seems that the only trace left of the monument is a mould made by us. With this as a starting point, we will talk about official and unofficial memorials, and how to appropriate the landscape through them.

11:45-12:00: Break.

12:00-14:00: Conversation led by Xabier Gantzarain. Language: EU. Translation: ES & EN.


16:15-16:00: Presentation

16:15-17:00: Armina Pilav.  Language: EN. Translation: EU & ES.

Title: Transforming Violence

The talk will discuss entanglements of war and un-war spaces taking example of wartime in Sarajevo and Mostar (1992 - 1996). In the transitional space between military destructions and inhabitants’ non-violent reaction to it, the attempt is to look at the non-violent human practices of survival body, collective documenting, communing and sharing of the homes and shelters during the war, ephemeral architectures made from fear and for survival. During the talk, we will also explore the spatial and cultural languages of the un-war spaces learned from the archival images: photography, videos and texts.

17:00-17:45: Ariel Caine.  Language: EN. Translation: EU & ES.

Title: Granular Realism. Examining methods for collaborative photographic spatial testimonies

Over the last decade, 3D scanning and spatial imaging technologies have been rapidly permeating the fields of archaeology, architecture, civil engineering as well as resource driven industries and military. While they have been restructuring them from the inside these new technologies and their forms of practice have been shifting the conditions of visibility. They have been used as a means of violence and obfuscation but simultaneously open up new spaces for civic led intervention and resistance. In this talk I wish to consider some of the ways in which together with practitioners, researchers and activists we have been repurposing such imaging tools, bringing together computational, spatial and DIY ground and aerial photography to offer a form of practice that is diffused, collaborative and architectural, producing what we term “spatial testimony”, documenting and exposing the spatial evidence for systemic rights abuse in a state of visual and political colonisation.

During the talk we will unpack three projects, in Jerusalem, in the negev desert (Israel) and in the Sinjar region of northern Iraq, and through them examine the political potentials of DIY and citizen-led spatial survey methodologies.

17:45-18:00: Break.

18:00-19:15: Conversation led by Blanca Pujals.  Language: EN. Translation: EU & ES.

19:15-20:00: Summary of the Geographies and Forms of Power project

October 20: Live talks in  


Blanca Pujals


Ariel Caine

Artist and researcher

Armina Pilav

Architect, researcher and lecturer