An hypnotic tour through a fictional city


April, 18th at 6.30 pm at the Hôtel Belvédère du Rayon Vert
Avenue de la Côte Vermeille, 66290 Cerbère, France

invitation We have never been here before 2

In a world that is really upside down, the true is a moment of the false.
Guy Debord

Adam Curtis’ The Century of the Self, a series of documentaries produced in 2002 for the British television, shows how after the Second World War corporations and governments supported the application of Sigmund Freud’s ideas in order to control masses, turning them into good consumers.  To ensure the growth of economy and its exponential expansion a shift from a needs- to a desire- based society was necessary.  Therefore, people had to be trained to desire new things beyond their real needs. The satisfaction of citizen’s inner irrational desires would make them happier and thus docile. This process led to the creation of a new imagery with the help of spectacle and entertainment methods that not only failed in making people happier. It turned them into beings impossible to satisfy because “The more [the spectator] contemplates, the less he lives; the more he identifies with the dominant images of need, the less he understands his own life and his own desires”.1

In a context of a global crisis within the ecological, the financial and, finally, the psychological realm we need to revisit our individual and collective desires as well as needs. We haven’t been here before is a hypnotic tour through a fictional city based on solidarity, knowledge exchange, sustainability and use value instead of price. Participants are invited to the cinema of the Hôtel Belvédère du Rayon Vert. With their eyes covered with sleeping masks they are guided through one possible future city, in which happiness does not relate neither with consumerism, nor with individual satisfaction.  

We have never been here before  is a project by Valeria Schwarz (i Collective´s foundational member) with the collaboration of Joanne Pouzenc as part of a proposal by Karine Vonna Zurcher for the workshop «Displacements» by Jérôme Leuba (MAPS, l’Ecole Cantonale d’Art du Valais, Switzerland).
Participating artists: Mohamed Abdelkarim, Noor Abuarafeh, Jessica Decorvet, Maddy Dymond, Franziska Lauber, Michael Marca, Erika Pirl, Lucas Rehnman, Valeria Schwarz.

1. Society of the Spectacle, Guy Debord. Rebel Press, London

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