montage.city is the blog that samples the topics of my phd research and reflects both my inter-disciplinary practice and the thinking and interests that lies behind it.
the modernist montage city was a pile-up of buildings jostling in cramped urban centres and interspersed with street signage and trams and, sometimes, people. the world was made image, or image upon image, each synaptic visual connection tumbling into dreams or memory, stimulating, playful and multivalent.
montaging, for benjamin, cannot be disassociated from the act of rescuing, the efforts to recycle rubbish, detritus, scraps that appear to have no value. he deployed for the purposes of critical enlightenment what he called ‘rags and refuse’, a procedure later described in his arcades project. he planned a series of illustrated publications written by himself and others, such as bloch, investigating degraded forms of material. his notebook from the period includes a list of topics, such as studies of the aesthetics of postcards, waxwork cabinets, kitsch, cabaret and advertising. benjamin’s procedure involved less a rescue of tradition than the rescue of experiences unacknowledged, experiences under threat, rejectamenta, materials on the point of disappearance. from esther leslie : walter benjamin