Subprojects | Art Research & Public Relations

Migrating Spaces and Tourism

The project “Migrating Spaces and Tourism” explores spatial references and relationships arising from overlaps between the social phenomena of migration and tourism. The cultural practices and spatial logics characterising these fields are correlated with the re-figuration of the social order through processes of ‘spacing’ and perception-related acts of synthesising involved (see Löw 2001). The study is based on the assumption that the phenomena of migration and tourism show structural similarities as both are based on flows and activities of movement, forming a “continuum of mobility” (Buckow 2013, 53), whose poles represent internal and external causalities setting up the process of circulation. Imaginations of spaces, which give rise to migration and tourism, might be defined as being the driving force of re-figuration processes (see Holert/Terkessidis 2006).

The key question of the project is the following: How is the re-figuration of spaces reflected and verifiable on an artistic, i.e. visual, pictorial plane? Key aspects of re-figuration defined by the CRC such as mediatisation, polycontexturalisation and translocalisation are analysed in three case studies in a combination of scientific and artistic research methods. The Vietnamese wholesale trade centre Dong Xuan Center in Berlin’s Lichtenberg borough, the German village Dogil Maeul in South Korea and the theme park Windows of the World in South China’s special economic zone Shenzhen all represent places oscillating between the poles of migration of culturally coded contexts on the one hand, and touristic practices on the other. Techniques in visual fieldwork, artistic survey and videography developed and effectively employed in earlier art and research projects will be used in combination with established methods of qualitative social research. A complementary scientific study of the artistic approach used in the project will analyse the broader applicability of artistic methods in research contexts. The results of our scientific-artistic inquiry may be experienced and evaluated in a multi-channel video walk-in installation.

The project takes a rather independent approach to research in so far as it reflects the constitution of spaces specified in the CRC’s various other projects using artistic methods and media. Presenting the results in a public exhibition (planned for September 2020 at Berlin’s Haus der Kulturen der Welt) will make sure that the research findings are accessible not only to specialists but also to a wider national and international public.

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