From the editors
CULTURE IN A "FOREIGN" SPACE: AN INTRODUCTION
TO GENIUS LOCI KALININGRAD AND KOENIGSBERG
KALININGRAD IN THE YEAR 2020 - A NOT QUITE FICTITIOUS CONVERSATION
DESTINATION - KALININGRAD
FROM KALININGRAD DICTIONARY
MAP OF THE CITY
FORMA URBIS. SYMBOLIC PARALLELS
IN OR OUT
THE RAILWAY STATION AND ENTRANCE TO THE CITY OF KALININGRAD
BINARY STATES OF "K" CITY
Eugeny Umansky, Karpenko-Karpenko
IN THE CENTER
Andrei Monastyrsky, Sabina Haensgen
EMPTY CENTER K.
FOLLOWING SILENT WORDS
FA+ (Ingrid Falk & Gustavo Aguerre)
THE MYTHICAL FOUNDATION OF KALININGRAD
PRETERITION: KNEIPHOF ISLAND
THE BRIDGES AND "THE PREGEL'S ODOR"
John Craig Freeman, Greg Ulmer
IMAGING KALININGRAD: THE SEVEN BRIGES OF KOENIGSBERG
FORGOTTEN KANT AND THE KANT-BRAND IN KOENIGSBERG
KANT'S BRIDES: A READYMADE PHOTOGRAPHIC CHRONOTOPE
THE CATHEDRAL AND KANT FOR EVERYONE, OR IS GOD FEARSOME WITHOUT MORAL
THE CASTLE OF SOVIETS
THE ROYAL CASTLE
A WHITE SEAGULL ABOVE THE CITY: THE SYMBOLS OF THE OLD NEW CITY
WRITING OF DREAMS
LIGHT UP DOM SOVETOV
THE HOUSE OF SOVIETS
THE MOST PROFOUND SECRET OF ONE KOENIGSBERG LAWYER: HOFFMANN
A LEGEND ABOUT FIVE LITTLE ULRICHEN AND FERRYMAN ANDRE
KOENIGSBERG-KALININGRAD. THE TASTE OF MARZIPAN
THE COUNTRY OF PENSIONERS - OR THE GERMANS
CONCRETE ELEMENTS OF KALININGRAD
THE UNDREAMED OF CITY
TOWN PLANNING MATHEMATICS
MOSKOVSKII PROSPECT & THE SHADOWS AROUND ALTSTADT
OUR TOWER Ivan Chechot
THE TOWER-REDAN "KRONPRINZ"
THE KRONPRINZ TOWER. Projects for the National Centre for Contemporary Arts by Students of the Institute for Theory and Design in Architecture (Braunschweig, Germany)
THE AMBER ROOM
BASTIONS IN DIAMONDS AND EMERALDS
THE HOUSE OF MACHINERY: THE RECONSTRACTION AND EXPLOITATION OF THE POPULATION
V.I.P. (Very Interesting Person)
PLACE OF EXECUTION
TRACES OF A VIRTUAL HISTORY IN A VERY REAL CITY
CHRIST THE SAVIOR CATHEDRAL
LIFE AND EGGS (A sketch about trams)
A STROLL THROUGH THE CENTER
IN THE FLOW: FOUNTAIN SEASON
WILD WEST OF RUSSIA
ANIMALS IN KALININGRAD AND A MOSAIC
KOENIGSBERG'S SPIRITUAL HERITAGE IN TONS, ITEMS AND SACKS. From the history of lost and found cultural heritage
WE ALL ARE GOING TO BE THERE
MONUMENT TO 1200 GUARDSMEN IN KALININGRAD
MATTER AND SPIRIT
FRAGMENT OF A SYMPHONY FOR SLOW READING: IVANOV AND HIS SURROUNDINGS
ATTIC OF RECOGNITION
MAN AND WOMAN
THE SMALL SCULPTURE "GIRL"
ON THE STREET
Igor Isaev, Dmitrii Demidenko
THE FIRE HYDRANT
Kalle Brolin, Kristina Muntzing
THE WATERFALL HERACLES' BOLT
V.I.P. (Very Interesting Person)
NATASHA POTERYASHINA. Inteview
TO BE IN THE MOOD FOR PACKING
Dmitrii Bulatov, Pavel Savel'ev
ACEPHALUS: OPTICAL MODELS
LIGHT THE CRYSTALS OF KALININGRAD!
THE BRIDGE THAT THE "RUSSIANS COULDN'T PULL DOWN"
THE ROAD TO BERLIN: FROM EPIC TO BANAL. Interview with Valerii Bugrov
HOAR-STONES AND BOUNDARY SYMBOLS
MUSCOVITES ARE HANGING
BEFORE THE CITY
IMAGING KALININGRAD: THE SEVEN BRIGES OF KOENIGSBERG
John Craig Freeman / Nashua, USA
Greg Ulmer / Gainesville, USA
Imaging Place is a documentary virtual reality method, which uses a combination of panoramic photography and digital video to investigate place. Although the Imaging Place method borrows freely from the traditions of documentary still photography and filmmaking, the Imaging Place method departs from those traditions by using the emerging nonlinear narrative structures made possible by new interactive technologies and telecommunication apparatuses. It also seeks to expand the notion of documentary by exploring how place is internalized, mapping place as a state of mind. It is exhibited primarily in alternative art exhibition spaces, museums and over the Internet. The work is projected up to nine by twelve feet in a darkened space with a podium and a mouse placed in the center of the space, which allows the audience to navigate throughout the project. When activated by the click of a mouse, the project leads the user from global satellite imagery to virtual reality scenes on the ground. The user may then navigate throughout an immersive space. Rather than the linear structures of the novel or cinema, this new form allows the story of place to unfold in a meandering labyrinth of discovery and associations. The goal of the Imaging Place method is to document sites of cultural significance, which for political, social, economic or environmental reasons are under duress, at risk of destruction or undergoing substantial change. This includes historic sites as well as sites of living culture that are being displaced by globalization and the collapse of industrial modernism.
The earliest Imaging Place work was produced in 1997 as an attempt to apply what is known about the transition from aural culture to literate culture and to shed light on the current transition from literate culture to electrate culture. Electracy is the apparatus that is to digital imaging what literacy is to alphabetic writing. In aural cultures, language is the technology used to extend and supplement human memory. The wisdom of the culture is passed on from generation to generation through ritual storytelling. A story was easier to remember if it rhymed, but the amount of human knowledge was limited by what one person could remember. In literate culture, the written word is the technology used to extend memory. It is no longer necessary to remember the entire story. All that needs to be remembered is how to read and write. Knowledge can accumulate and can be passed on by entire generations in literate cultures. In an electrate age the Internet, the hyperlink and the image is the cybernetic, prosthetic technology that we use to extend our memory.
Imaging Place is designed to accommodate interdisciplinary collaboration conducted across institutions and over distances. It uses new technology to bring disparate bodies of knowledge together through the investigation and documentation of place. The method attempts to bridge the gaps in understanding that exist between esoteric disciplines that have developed as a result of academic and industrial specialization. Technological tools are now available for bringing the work of experts together without sacrificing the depth and dimension of specialized knowledge and to connect the abstraction of highly specialized thinking with the visceral experiences of people on the ground. In addition to providing a form for the generation, dissemination and accumulation of interdisciplinary research and artistic production, the Imaging Place method provides a model strategy for collaboration.
I propose to travel to Kaliningrad, where the famous Swiss mathematician Leonard Euler invented Topology, a branch of mathematics that is the key to understanding how networks are formed. The Pregel River flows through the city of Kaliningrad with two islands in the middle of the river. In 1735, when Euler was visiting the city, there were seven bridges connecting the islands to each other and to the banks of the river. A favorite pastime for visitors to the city was to try to solve the puzzle of whether or not a person could walk throughout the city and cross each of the bridges exactly once. Some people told Euler that it was impossible, while others said that they doubted it could be done. Euler found a way to answer this question and settle everyone's doubts. Euler realized that by representing the areas of land as points, which he called vertices, and the bridges as arcs, all problems of this sort could be solved.
The problem now becomes one of drawing this picture without retracing any line and without picking your pencil up off the paper. Consider this: all four of the vertices in the above picture have an odd number of arcs connected to them. Take one of these vertices; let's say one of the ones with three arcs connected to it. Let's say that you are going along, trying to trace the above figure out without picking up your pencil. The first time you get to this vertex, you can leave by another arc. But the next time you arrive, you can't. So you had better be finished drawing the figure when you get there! Alternatively, you could start at that vertex, and then arrive and leave later. But then you can't come back. Thus every vertex with an odd number of arcs attached to it has to be either the beginning or the end of your pencil-path. So you can only have up to two 'odd' vertices! Thus it is impossible to draw the above picture in one pencil stroke without retracing. Accordingly it was impossible to walk through the city of Koenigsberg and cross each of the seven bridges only once. The navigation of Imaging Place is organized with a network of vertices, created with panoramic still photography and a network of video shots, created by walking the camera from vertex to vertex. I have also attempted to model the structure of Imaging Place after human memory. So, in a topological model, ideas are represented as vertices and associations as arcs.
This act of invention has not only been important to the architecture of the Internet, it has served as an important relay in the development of the Imaging Place project. Another important relay has been The Philosopher's Walk. Twenty Years after Euler's visit to Koenigsberg, Immanuel Kant began his academic career at the Albertus University in Koenigsberg. It is said that residents of Koenigsberg set their clocks by Professor Kant's daily walk. The street is still called the Philosophengang (Philosopher's Walk) in his memory.
I am proposing to create two new Imaging Place works in the City of Kaliningrad, one on the Seven Bridges of Koenigsberg and the other on the Philosopher's Walk. I am also proposing to mount an exhibition of the work in Kaliningrad, once it is completed.