Reparative artistic practices for a mental, social and environmental change of urban planning.

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In recent years cultural urban planning, artistic practices and temporary spaces have been used as tool in strategic urban planning. Whereas these planning methods engage with art and performances as alternative and participatory means for creating a lively and vibrant city, they rarely change the final outline of the built environment (Madanipour 2017, Fabian & Samson 2016. Rather performances and artistic practices leads to cultural-led gentrification which put both art and our urban spaces in crises. To further problematizes culture-led gentrification, art and performances in many aspects seem to support a human-centered anthropocentric worldview, that does not account for multispecies livability and more-than human rights to the city. However, by looking into recent site specific performance works and performative practices collected through the transdisciplinary course, Performative Urbanism at Roskilde University, this paper proposes that art and performances might instead serve as reparative practices for seeing and planning the city differently. For instance, embodied and performative mapping practices may enable citizens to reconnect with more-than human lives and find value in found spaces and existing biodiversity of spatial qualities. Or, artistic practices may bring environmental awareness of the impacts of urbanisation to the fore, which is the case of Nana Francisca’s collective performance in the soil depository in Nordhavnen in Copenhagen (Bodyscaping / Habitat, Metropolis 2021). As this proposal focus on how mental, environmental and social change intersect, the presentation will draw on ecologist Guattari’s Three Ecologies and ecofeminists Donna Haraway’s and Anna Tsing’s notion of reparative practices. In the presentation I will show visual documentation of artistic and performative practices and work from an improvisational and performative idea of encounters between imagery and conceptual thinking.
Literature: Fabian, Louise & Kristine Samson (2016) Claiming participation – a comparative analysis of DIY urbanism in Denmark, Journal of Urbanism: International Research on Placemaking and Urban Sustainability, 9:2, 166-184, DOI: 10.1080/17549175.2015.1056207
Guattari, Félix. The Three Ecologies . London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2014.
Haraway, D. (2016). Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene. North Carolina: Duke University Press.Madanipour, Ali. “Temporary Use of Space: Urban Processes Between Flexibility, Opportunity and Precarity.” Urban studies (Edinburgh, Scotland) 55.5 (2018): 1093–1110.Tsing, A., 2015. The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press.
Original languageEnglish
Publication dateOct 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021
EventUrban Crises - Oslo Met, Oslo Met, Norway
Duration: 27 Oct 202129 Oct 2021


ConferenceUrban Crises
LocationOslo Met
CityOslo Met


  • reparative practices
  • environmental change
  • planning
  • embodied knowing
  • environmental aesthetics
  • mapping

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