Découvrez Quartier Antigone

3 video episodes/17:35/2019
a film by: Evamaria Müller
performance: Julia Novacek
french translation & voice over: Bobby M. Klein

In the year 1974 the time of the „Grand Project“ started in France:
Due to the political decentralization of 1982/83, the regions gained in local power, therefore, many cities tried to enhance their image with urban development projects. Some major projects found their realizaiton because of the competitions between the cities mayors. Cities were perceived as stages, the goal was to create its own identity, which was often based on local idiosyncrasies. This is how Montpellier got „Antigone – green, mediterranean, monumental, socialist!“ The mayor George Frêche commissioned the project from the architect Ricardo Bofill and thus set himself a monument in the process.

In general, there is talk of a missing identity of this place: The dominant architecture and the facades are more important than the living spaces. For a long time it was forbidden to hang curtains, to paint over the gray walls or to put laundry over the windowsill so as not to disturb the overall architectural picture. Initially, the mayor held numerous events in Antigone, but they rarely found favor among the residents. They lacked spontaneity and the usual natural bustle of the city.
The architectural dominance and the externally determined staging of the district did not contribute to the shaping of a new identity. It seems to be a stage design, an outdated backdrop that has a compulsive character to it.

Antigone – This is the place she visits. She is a reporter, tourist guide, expert and moderator.
She reports, comments, analyzes and speaks a collection of texts from various sources: talk shows, forewords, documentaries and scientific texts. She reports from Antigone (Sophokles drama), Antigone (the character) and Antigone (the place) where political structures and methods of self-empowerment are debated.

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