Anders Bojen, born in 1975 in Copenhagen (Denmark). He lives and works in Copenhagen.
Kristoffer Ørum, born 1976 in Copenhagen (Denmark). He lives and works in Copenhagen.
Topographies of the Insignificant is a description of ultra-local spaces in five different cities across Europe, five similar places with no apparent characteristics or history: a section of pavement, with its disposed cigarette butts, coffee spills, chewing gum and tiny weeds, is explored as a complex microcosm of hidden information and uncharted territory. The project is envisioned as a contemporary version of Daniel Spoerri’s An Anecdoted Topography of Chance (an associative mapping of objects lying at random on the table in the artist’s hotel room) set in the globalized and media-saturated world of 2010. Topographies of the Insignificant will connect micro-topographies of Rome, Berlin, Vienna, Bratislava, and Luxembourg.
The project takes the form of a website with an “infinitely” zoom-able map of the world. Extra detailed zones are added, enabling the user to zoom down to a micro-level and see actual cracks of the pavement as if they were great valleys or distant galaxies. The extremely detailed map of six very limited locations is in close proximity to the physical show where the project is presented. This gives users the opportunity to further explore the locations on-site and add their own insignificant stories.
Topographies of the Insignificant is based on a collaborative writing process taking place online with a selected group of writers, artists, architects, and others with an interest in urbanity. New points on the maps and texts are collectively produced and all texts are open for editing or expansion by other members of the group. This organic and nonlinear process blurs the boundaries of ownership between the participants and encourages many connections between the different points on the map.
Scattered across each of the locations, a vast number of clickable points is located. Each clickable point on the map opens up a text window featuring fictional or factual information about this specific point, and links to other points and texts. Multiple narratives weave in and out of each other and researched facts about found objects and their history will mix freely with fictional accounts and imagined micro-topographies. Through such meticulous mapping, the seemingly insignificant objects and places are linked, not only to each other, but to historical, social and political events, rendering them anything but insignificant.
By means of a willful misunderstanding, the project turns apparently familiar city pavements into a mixture of space-operatic visions of the future and histories of the past.
Through collective and deliberate misunderstanding, over-interpretation and fictional connections between the five physical sites, the project reflects on the possibility of radically rethinking the city from the bottom up.