together with Arnold Schlachter, video, 13’, 2010.
Anti-windows is a documentation of all the bricked up windows in the area surrounding the Carol Park.
Taking long strolls through the neighborhood we recorded all the windows that are walled up completely and are part of buildings in use. The anti-window is, thus, a bricked up window, an obturated path of the passerby’s gaze. He is the flâneur, the one who strolls along the streets searching for the city. Walter Benjamin evokes the flâneur that discovers the iron and steel arcades, those urban elements of passage in 19th century Paris. These objects determine the specificity of the Parisian flâneur. The flâneur, always a dilettante, an amateur, wanders around through the city searching for the shapes that make its particularities.
In Bucharest, the bricked up window seems a frequently seen sign of the specific relation between the public sphere and the private. In our stroll, the public space is interogated at the level of its visuality, questioning the gaze of the wandering subject. The visuality of the public space reaches a pause through the anti-window. The anti-window is a blocking of the curious gaze that seeks the dialogue of the public with the private space. In this way, the anti-window radicalizes difference between the two spaces. Although the private has isolated itself, traces of the dialogue are still visible: decolored squares following the former limits of the window, untouched windowsills, sometimes even frames or plate glasses with bricks built behind them. The visuality of the public space reinvents itself, it becomes something else, but still keeps scraps of another way of „seeing”.
What does the street become because of this change? Who is the flâneur of this street? Does the anti-window make him a potential danger? Either way, in front of the window that has become a wall, the flâneur becomes more present and more isolated.