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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Wednesday, February 16, 2005
    Subverting the city
    Did my seminar, Towards an Urban Theology of Land, yesterday. Only a small gathering but nevertheless a good conversation afterwards, which moved between people talking about projects in their part of town which imaginatively investigated 'place', and debates about the way capital has promoted time over place to its own ends. Interesting stuff emerged about how 'the natural' always takes over eventually. Whether that's flowers breaking through the concrete or people reclaiming so-called non-places, it always happens. And as if to demonstrate that one of the city centre clergy walked in near the end to say he'd come from a meeting of a group of luxury loft apartment-dwellers who are breaking the isolation of their living and forming a tenants association.

    And on Channel Four last night, tonight and tomorrow at 7.55, Wrights and Sites and others are involved in the 3 MINUTE WONDER: SUBVERTING THE CITY, in which "Filmmaker Daniel Edelstyn joins four groups of artists and activists using urban environments as a stage from which to question and challenge the preconceptions built into the modern city." Last night - people climbing church walls, tiptoeing along safety barriers and lying down on street hardware. Thursday, apparently, will be a Mis-Guide to Milton Keynes. Tonight - dunno; can't wait to find out.