The Demolition Project is a collaboration between Russian artist Alisa Oleva and English writer/performer Debbie Kent, using the city as both material and studio. Walking is at the heart of our practice, alone or with others; we like setting tasks and using instructions to provoke ideas, start conversations and open up possibilities for the imagination. Our work aims to open up the cracks in reality and shift the way people see things, their sense of ownership or power; and it invites the audience to play an active role.
This is a walkshop – a workshop conducted on the streets, that involves walking and doing, rather than sitting and listening.
It invites participants to think about how to be invisible in the city, and who might be watching. Can we be aware of all the eyes on us without letting on that we’re looking at them? Is it possible to escape surveillance – by other people, security staff, CCTV – in the city? Or have we brought our own surveillance with us – on our mobile phones, our Oyster cards, the plastic in our wallets?
We will explore tactics and strategies for avoiding attention or hiding in plain sight; and we’ll look at the opposite – how to be suspicious – using the Metropolitan police guidelines as a starting point.
Along the way we’ll look at artists, activists and urbanists who have been interested in urban in/visibility, from Broomberg+Chanarin to Hito Steyerl, Bradley Garrett to Walter Benjamin. And there will be ample time for conversation and debate about any issues raised by the question of what it means to be in/visible in the city.