samedi 13 novembre 2010

# Meat and 2 Veg by Ali Qureshi & Muhammad Zulfiker Enayet

Meat and 2 Veg is a pretty peculiar project designed by Ali Qureshi & Muhammad Zulfiker Enayet in the University of Greenwich in London. In fact, this project proposes a very poetic re-interpretation of the Cyprus conflict between Greek and Turkish Cypriots. Bullets trajectories are replaced by food trajectories and space ends up serving a big banquet for both sides.
The project itself is a sort of slaughterhouse (which is not without recalling Martin Byrne's to some extent). whose main characters are the reconverted US Army "big dogs".

Here is the text Ali and Muhammad wrote in order to explain their approach:

Our ‘theatrical landscape’ is situated in the Buffer Zone, in Nicosia, Cyprus. The site (and the city) is currently divided between Greek Cyprus to the south and the Turkish Occupied Territory to the North.
The theatre of war has delineated that which is Turkish from that which is Greek in the Green Line, a ceasefire line within the city limits. But the line is actually a space with operation posts on either side of it, in a state of ceasefire for 35 years. We imagine how the exiled Cypriots will be rehoused in the Buffer Zone.
Gunslots around the contested space frame a series of miniature theatres. The appearance of any occupants could result in deadly gunfire.
We have replaced the guns with the accoutrements of a feast, a shared dining space, a public kitchen, and a vanishing banquet, stored in the operation posts atop the batteries of the venetian fortifications.
Once the united nations post has been vacated, vegetables will be sent in from the gunslots on the Greek side to tables suspended over the space, where the banquet will take place. The trajectories of gunfire will be replaced with slow moving tomatoes, courgettes and sumptuous olives. Market stalls with abundant produce will set up below, grapevines and lemon groves will infiltrate the buffer zone.
Ali the Greengrocer will reprogramme the ‘big dog’ US robots to farm the inaccessible spaces. Once the mines have been cleared, he will send robotic farmers in to grow vegetables for the feast. Crops will be watered using rotating irrigation arms emerging periodically from the operation posts. Remote harvesting techniques will be employed. Remote controlled triggers will signal the need for more provisions, the use of fertilizers, the dusting and spraying of crops, and harvesting.
Sheep grazing on the ancient battlements will be farmed by Mohammed the butcher, and sent across the ceasefire line for the annual feast. The Butchers cleaver comes down on the sheep on the borderline. This is the realm of Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde, a butchers’ market stall in the buffer zone. Over time, the wall of blood in the housing / butchery will be drained and in its place will grow the richest of red flowers.
Our theatrical landscape will tamper with nature to create a spectacle and a shared space for people, plants, animals. A place where people from both sides can merge in the moonlight.


tutors: James Curtis, Reenie (Karin) Elliott & Francois Girardin



The Theatre of War: Mapping the positions of gunslots and their trajectories, a reeanactment of a battle.
Re-programming the spaces and accoutrements of warfare for a more benign purpose
Gunslots around the contested space frame a series of miniature theatres.

Exploring modernist technologies: Electro-magnetism in the air 'wirelessly' powers up lamps, tampering with nature to create a spectacle.

Pop up landscapes subvert militaristic functions to achieve an aesthetic purpose, sometimes comical and always eerily prescient

The Big Dog: US robots reprogrammed to farm the inaccessible spaces of the buffer zone

Robots dock off to be repaired/recharged

Sheeps graze on the ancient battlements. The Butchers cleaver comes down on the borderline.

In the aftermath of military operations; why not reconfigure a permanent housing project on the temporary barricades of the buffer zone?

Dehumanisation of the others

Big Dog remote controlled robotic farmers, a robot dock, a housing project, a butchery, a market and a last supper

Vegetable crops grown in the buffer zone, irrigated by rotating arms positioned in the operation posts.

Blood is gathered in sacks of ETFE. Over time, this wall of blood in the housing / butchery will be drained and in its place will grow the richest of red flowers.

The realm of Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde: Meat and veg market stalls are positioned in the strategic trajectories of gunfire, dining tables are spectacles viewed from gunslots.
After the market is packed away and the last remains of the last supper have been cleared, the robots begin the next days harvest.

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