{ play }


Play as a moment of arrival.

What is the distinction between bending the rules/playing and illegal activity? Is play a frightening activity when it comes to the reproduction of neoliberal progress, especially when not concerned with an outcome other than the activity itself?

Most cultures have often regarded or made time and space for sharing knowledge; some cultures do it in the form of ritual, some in sharing stories. This collective act can be regarded as an attempt to write orality, language, speech back into the very fabrics of architecture, and by doing so offer a critical vantage point into an all too busy and saturated image-based contemporary media landscape.

The act of playing could be seen as communicative or, in other words, a collective exercise of being in relation. It is a state of being together; togetherness in order to provide a reflexivity that is playful. It means daring to unsettle the boundaries of the status quo; to fiction the feasibility of an alternative reality. Being with each other and (re-)acting within this realm is the essence of a play. And here, the commonality between a play and language could appear. If progress is a constant move into the future, for the perfection of the modernist project, play without an immediate outcome could therefore be seen as a break or even as a moment of arrival, a moment of letting go.

Within this context, the structure of language as a collective and participatory tool, instead of one rational logic, can diminish the distinction between us and others. Togetherness, therefore, can be seen as political resistance against total functionality and the individual fulfilment of requirements which has been part of the rhetoric of modernism. This rhetoric is based on a hierarchical approach to different cultures: Hegel, for example, disregards the African continent as the childhood of humanity in his phenomenology; as people who just play.


Ali Ardalan, Angelos Chiotis, Kibandu Pello-Esso, Sebastian Moske