Passen-gers Series 1: The Brunswick Centre

Passen-gers Publication
Series 1: The Brunswick Centre

Passen-gers is a site-specific exhibition series that explores the historical, social and material contexts of prominent sites and architecture.

For its inaugural series artists Mark Siebert, Paula Smolarska, Evy Jokhova, Julie Hill, Theodoros Stammatogiannis and Xiaowen Zhu presented work sequentially that explored the real and imaginative associations of the Brunswick Centre – a Modernist, mixed residential and commercial development in Bloomsbury, London.  A community project by photographer Ben Blossom and a public programme of talks, events, dinners and screenings accompanied the series. The exhibitions were hosted and supported by Gauld Architecture.

The publication brings together the following content:

• Specially commissioned essays by Rory Olcayto,Timothy Dixon, Farrah Jarral, Paul Carey-Kent, Rory O'Connor and Francesca Girelli

• A transcript of a panel discussion following a screening of Michelangelo Antonioni’s The Passenger at Curzon Bloomsbury (1975) featuring architect David Levitt who worked with architect Patrick Hodgkinson on The Brunswick; architect Takero Shimazaki who designed the refurbished Curzon Bloomsbury cinema and was chaired by broadcaster and writer Farrah Jarral. The  conversation reflects on the use of architecture in film and the social and political forces that have shaped what The Brunswick is today.

• Full colour reproductions of exhibition imagery

• Photography from Villagers, a community project by photographer Ben Blossom who provided residents with disposable cameras to document each other and test the notion of the village set forth by the centre’s architect Patrick Hodgkinson

• Historical photographs of the Brunswick Centre by Richard Einzig

• An introductory text and images of the summative exhibition Multiplex by Kevin Gauld/Gauld Architecture

Artists present work sequentially to explore the real and imaginative associations of the site. The title references the 1975 film The Passenger by Michelangelo Antonioni that uses the Brunswick Centre as a powerful and otherworldly mise-en-scène. The plot follows a journalist who assumes the identity of a dead businessman while working on a documentary in Chad, unaware that he is impersonating an arms dealer with connections to the rebels in the current civil
war. This notion of a ‘passenger’ as someone who inhabits transient identities and spaces, relates to how each artist is rendered a passenger within the larger exhibition structure – a structure that is generative and multi-directional, allowing different ideas, themes and narratives to emerge, overlap and intersect, creating dialogue over time. www.passen-gers.co.uk

The Brunswick Centre is a grade II listed residential and shopping centre  designed by Patrick Hodgkinson in the mid-1960s.

Publisher: PETREL
First published: May 2018
Number of pages: 112 pp
Softback, 170 × 240 mm  ISBN 9780957268746