Guided Tour is multi-part, multi-year original urban photographic research project; in its several incarnations it is the heart of Gabrielle’s PhD dissertation, an interactive DVD, and an exhibition and book project in the works.
This project incorporates conceptual, epistemological and methodological questions to complicate our understanding of the creation, knowledge and experience of everydayness in two heterogeneous neighborhoods in Brooklyn, New York and Oakland, California. The project weaves local with global, personal with political, embodied with ideological, in two neighborhoods marked by American post-World War II urbanism.
Challenging conceptions of the role of the expressive, the individual and the visual in research, the work shows that a combination of embodied walking and expressive representational photographic strategies—my “guided tours” method—can show us new ways of knowing about the physical and phenomenal everyday world. This is explored through the project’s written text, and in the interactive work, the viewer experiences stories of place as though they themselves were walking through the neighborhood.
From this unique method and representation, the dissertation work develops a typology of “layered dynamics” to understand how everydayness is continually created through processes of knowing, negotiating and experiencing, as places and lives are woven together. These layered dynamics are the intersecting and changing forces and motions that come from and change lives in a neighborhood; they characterize the system of a place, and constitute the everyday experience of places we inhabit.
“Walking, Emotion, and Dwelling: Guided Tours in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn”, Space & Culture, 2005; 8; 459.
“Guided Tours: The layered dynamics of self, place and image in two American neighborhoods”, PhD Dissertation, 2009.
Studying the City, Palgrave Macmillan, in press
For a copy of the DVD or the dissertation, please contact us.