The park seen from the school towards the church.
The park seen from the school towards the church.

A durational intervention

The overall aim with the art-project is to re-imagine and map the role of the local citizen. This role is still safeguarded in the Danish legislation, but has gradually lost its actual importance.

In Concerning a Meadow, the park and the cloud-burst protection plan are introduced as a case. It serves as a mere reason for testing the imagery of the local citizen, and to restage the direct local public conversation between a broad range of people and professions linked to a given urban area. Could we reimagine this role? Could we co-produce examples of a deeply local publicness?

To begin with, from October 2019 – October 2020, Kerstin Bergendal initiated a series of non-planned video-dialogues/ portraits with residents and/or other local agents from within the close vicinity of the park. Each conversation was edited into 8-10 minutes long videos. Through each film, we are introduced to a lived experience of the park and a view of the everyday life in the urban area. (See these short films here).

The artist does however not invite participants only to express their opinions. She also momentarily invites them to meet in open and unprogrammed direct actions or haptic exchanges, aimed to give the opportunity  to stand in the shoes of the Other. A series of improvised actions in the park or in the vicinity of the park support this exchange, as do assemblies around maps and models of the park. These activities will temporarily become a physical part of the park, through the addition of a co-produced pavillion / potting shed, mounted from April 2021 – 2024.

The artist does not take part in any defining or decision-making concerning the future park.

She maintains an alternative parallel space for the slow and durational enquiry, introduced as a different local hearing phase. Activities and conversations are continually documented, edited and  re-circled among participants to secure a continued open development in the dialogue.  

 

 

 

 
This image was included in the competition brief concerning the reorganization of the Grønningen park in 2019. It is a drawing by Kerstin Bergendal introducing a different concept for a shared timeline, making it possible to synchronize the production of the landscape and the enhanced local public dialogue.
This image was included in the competition brief concerning the reorganization of the Grønningen park in 2019. It is a drawing by Kerstin Bergendal introducing a different concept for a shared timeline, making it possible to synchronize the production of the landscape and the enhanced local public dialogue.

A synchronized timeline

The art project was initiated half a year before the architectural competition for reorganisation of the park was realised. The artist requested the video dialogues to be included as obligatory reference for the competing teams of architects, in line with all other reports and surveys of the park sent to them in advance.

And through the initiative of the artist, a different concept of co-production and timeline of the re-design of the park was also included as a pre-set condition in the architectural competition. This was suggested through the drawing by Kerstin Bergendal in the above, showing the concept of a synchronized timeline for all three, otherwise separated production processes necessary within a public planning procedure.

 

Blomstrende træer på græsplæne

A physical park

In May 2020, the Danish landscape architecture office SLA Landscape won the competition. They have actively collaborated with the art project, taking part in and including the extended dialogue as a part of their preparations for the design program.

The final park will be concluded in 2023.