The City Lost
Full HD video | 16:9 | 16.45 min. | Black and white | Sound

The City Lost shows a succession of black-and-white, unpeopled shots that join to create a visual archive of Chandigarh’s architectural forms and formal compositions. Unlike the video works of the Chandigarh trilogy, the spatial pictures, despite their documentary character, are explicitly elevated to the level of the historic imaginary. Walkowiak achieves this by overlaying the depicted visual archive with an audio track that borrows from famous science fiction films such as Blade Runner and 2001: A Space Odyssey. Via the sound plane, the city is thereby contrasted with culturally generated forms of futuristic visions familiar from the genre of the science fiction film. Walkowiak thus evokes the memory of an idea of the future that, while it has inscribed itself in Chandigarh’s formal language, has now become history. As he did in the video works of the trilogy, the artist explores utopian aspirations historically associated with Chandigarh, but in The City Lost, he simultaneously gives it the character of a dystopia.

Stephanie Damianitsch