Non-place | Worlds Away

Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes


Walker Art Center,
February 16 - August 17, 2008

Carnegie Museum of Art,
October 4, 2008 - January 18, 2009

Yale School of Architecture
March 2 - May 10, 2009

Because suburbia occupies a dominant presence in so many lives—a place of not only residence but also of work, commerce, worship, education, and leisure—it has become a focal point for competing interests and viewpoints. The suburbs have always been a fertile space for imagining both the best and the worst of modern social life. more

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Drawn Here: Sean Griffiths of FAT
Target Free Thursday Nights
Thursday, March 6 7:00 pm

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Saturday, April 5 10:00 am to 3:00 pm


Next Exit: The Shifting Landscape of Suburbia
Target Free Thursday Nights
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All essays are originally from the companion book for this exhibition, Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes. Some essays appear in excerpted form where noted.

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We asked people to make a video telling us about the suburbs and put it on YouTube. Selected videos are showing in the gallery at the Walker Art Center during the run of the exhibition.

Selected Videos

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Original Submission Call

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Do you live in a suburb? Do you work or go to school in one? What is your experience of the “burbs? ”…

Whether you love them or hate them we’re interested in your thoughts on the phenomenon of the American suburb. We invite you to make a 5-minute video about strip malls, cul-de-sacs, office parks, and green lawns or whatever suburbia means to you. A select number of videos will be chosen to screen as part of the exhibition Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes in the Target Gallery from February 15 to May 18, 2008.

To participate, upload your video to YouTube and add the tag “walkerworldsaway” or post it as a response to our video above. We’ll feature all videos on the Walker’s YouTube page. To be considered for gallery screening, entries must be 5 minutes or less and be online by January 18, 2008.

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Spaces of such temporary, transient activity as to not have the significance to be regarded as “places”; also called non-space

The term “non-place” was coined by French anthropologist Marc Augé, who wrote Non-Places: Introduction to an Anthropology of Supermodernity (1995). Examples of non-places include airports, supermarkets, hotel rooms, and highways.

“Marc Augé coined the term non-lieux [non-places] to describe specific kinds of spaces, chiefly architectural and technological, designed to be passed through or consumed rather than appropriated, and retaining little or no trace of our engagement with them. These spaces, principally associated with transit and communication, are for Augé the defining characteristics of the contemporary period he calls ‘supermodernity,’ the product and agent of a contemporary crisis in social relations and consequently in the construction of individual identities through such relations.”1


1 Emer O’Beirne, “Mapping the Non-Lieu in Marc Augé’s Writings,” Forum for Modern Language Studies 42, no. 1 (2006). (↑)


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