2010/ 2012

Sabine Bitter / Helmut Weber

Lagos, Rio de Janeiro, Beirut: Artistic Research on the Production of Urban Space

Since 1993, Vienna and Vancouver based artists Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber have worked on projects addressing cities, architecture, and the politics of representation and of space. Their series of photo- and video-works like University Paradox, Plugged In/ Fenced Out, Bronzeville, Caracas Hecho en Venezuela, Living Megastructures, and their projects for Differentiated Neighborhoods of New Belgrade engage with specific moments and logics of the global-urban change as they take shape in  neighborhoods, architecture, and everyday life. Since 2004, they have been members of the cultural collective Urban Subjects US (Bitter/Derksen/Weber).

International Grants (selected): MAK-Schindler Residency Program (Los Angeles); Kulturstiftung des Bundes (Germany); Artists Residency Banff Centre for the Arts (Canada); PS1 Studio Program (New York).

Lectures at international universities, amongst others at University for Art and Architecture (Bukarest); UCLA, CalArts (Los Angeles); CUNY, Graduate Center (New York); UCV (Caracas, Venezuela); Simon Fraser University (Vancouver); Rietveld Academy (Amsterdam); Akademie der Bildenden Künste Wien; Media + Architecture Biennial Graz.
Since 2007 Sabine Bitter has been working as Assistant Professor at the School for the Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada.

Recent publications: Right, to the City, Fotohof Edition, Salzburg 2009; Autogestion, or Henri Lefebvre in New Belgrade, Eds. Urban Subjects, Sternberg Press, Berlin & Fillip, Vancouver, 2009; LIVE LIKE THIS!,  Edition Camera Austria, Graz 2005; Caracas, Hecho en Venezuela, Revolver, Frankfurt 2005.

Lagos, Rio de Janeiro, Beirut: Artistic Research on the Production of Urban Space

Artistic Research on the production of urban space

Our artistic research focuses on the production of urban space through emerging forms of "religious" urbanism in Lagos and Rio de Janeiro. The concept aims to find and speculate on overlaps and similarities between the "religious" urbanism of (Neo-) Pentecostalism and Islamist movements and both the effects of historic modernization and recent neoliberal globalization. Despite the huge circulation of images which show the predominantly poor and/or conflictual urban areas (barrios, slums, marginal urban areas, contested urban sites) where Pentecostalism and Islamist movements are expanding to and establishing themselves out, these images hardly give an idea of the scale and dynamics as well as the historic and recent social and urban conditions of these new forms of "religious" urbanism.

Our research is based on a twofold structure in order to question the politics of representation of the expansion of religious-based urbanism:

- Research in Architecture on the Production of Urban Space: Representation of Space, Symbolic Function of Architecture - Politics of Representation.

- Research in Urban Territories: Production of Social Space through Media, Spaces of Representation - Politics of Images.