Bruges, with its UNESCO World Heritage-listed centre, is extremely conservative in its approach to its heritage. It can seem as though time has stood still. The Unfinished Cities exhibition, on the other hand, shows cities in the Middle East and Far East undergoing a constant state of flux. Urban development, property speculation, destruction and reconstruction after conflict have left these cities balanced on the border between ruin and building site.
The Lebanese photographer Ziad Antar depicts unfinished, destroyed and abandoned buildings in Beirut in a series of black and white photographs that evoke a city deeply wounded by occupation and civil war.
The Panamanian artist Iraida Icaza examines and reinterprets old photographic glass negatives of ruins and remnants of ancient Near and Middle Eastern civilizations.
A video by the Afhan video and performance artist Lida Abdul shows a vain attempt to pull down a huge damaged building with ropes. A hopeful sign that heritage can resist destruction or a testimony to the destructive urges of humanity?
The Iranian director Alireza Rasoulinejad’s satirical film exposes the impact of forced western modernity on Tehran.
A photographic series by the Saudi photographer Ahmed Mater follows the transformation of the holy city of Mecca into a modern, commercial place. The Saudi artist Sami Al Turki uses dreamy images of buildings that float over empty landscapes to allude to the unaffordable cost of land.
The German photographer Michael Wolf and the Chinese artist Xing Danwen focus on the sense of alienation generated by cities including Hong Kong and Tokyo. The Chinese artist Yang Yongliang portrays the devastating impact on the landscape of the current development boom.
UNFINISHED CITIES Indoor
01.04 - 18.10.2015
indoor - Free
Buiten Smedenvest 1
Tue - Sun | 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM