Abandonment, Authenticity, and Transgressive Placemaking

Kelly Bennett writes on the connections between authentic places, abandonment, and a new wave of placemaking.

From Ellis Island to New York's iconic water towers, do we need abandonment for authenticity? What happens when we take over an abandoned space and throw a party? 

Bennett writes about our fascination and need for spaces that have been given over to time: "When people talk about how a city is 'real,' they’re talking about the parts that make it a little dangerous." 

And, at the intersection of abandonment, urban spelunking, and public art, is the Wanderlust School of Transgressive Placemaking. Their most recent project was a complete reimagining of public space – a speakeasy inside a water tower atop an abandoned building in Manhattan. 

Full Story: Abandonment, Authenticity, and Transgressive Placemaking

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