A note on building sites:

They are hives of activity, and I love to watch people work. It is a site of simultaneous creation and destruction, both of which fascinate.  There are holes in the ground, controlled glimpses into what is buried underneath. Usually it is just the tarmac topping and the crumbly rubbly filling beneath, a kind of millionaires shortbread, but often there are wires or pipes. Scaffolding and hoardings, accompanying structures with their own short-lived beauty. These are not designed structures, no plans or cad models exist for these; they respond entirely to what is within, and adapt to the changes that take place. I like the sense that these poles and planks have been unpacked and constructed over and over, how many places, how many more? This building site uses yellow for its kit, but I have seen soft peaches, or reds, vivid greens and lilac smudges.

If I were to try to contextualise it, I suppose the building site has much in common with the archaeological dig. Plans are made, trenches are dug, stuff is uncovered, stuff is put back into the holes. But whereas a dig uncovers and then tries to return the ground as if it were never there, the building site creates the new, the archaeological remains of the future. These foundations may exist forever.

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Posted by:mvaughan