Vanessa Keith Presents a Vision for Future Cities at Matadero in Madrid!

It's the year 2100, let's look back at how we solved the climate crisis, shall we?

February 16, 2020

So honored to have been invited to speak on a panel about 2100: A Dystopian Utopia — The City After Climate Change at Matadero Art Center in Madrid! This event was the coming together of many like minded artists, architects and urban environmentalists searching for a vision of a better world. Twelve Cautionary Urban Tales, an exhibition about the city and its myriad potential futures, finds inspiration in SuperStudio’s Twelve Cautionary Tales for Christmas–twelve short stories each accompanied by an image, portraying a vision of an ideal city.

As part of a parallel program accompanying the exhibition, A Children’s Story, A Horror Story, a Synesthetic Story was a day long event at Matadero structured in three main parts, a group of international participants—architects, artists and theorists— from diverse context experiences, were asked to tell three stories. From the climate crisis to property speculation, the present seems to lead us toward a future that leaves no room for a dignified life: the future is a horror story, especially that of the city. In response to stories about future terror that can seem paralyzing, we aim to invoke speculation as a hopeful practice, an exercise in resistance that calls upon the need to identify future alternatives to resist what the future is said to hold.

Insightful, creative and meaningful discussions about the city, climate change, and what we project of ourselves into the future. Thanks to all the wonderful people at Intermediae and Matadero Madrid for the invitation, and to TerreformUR and Michael Sorkin for their unflagging enthusiasm and support. I’m leaving here inspired and energized!

Panel discussion with Martin Savransky, Jaime Palomera and Moderator Adolfo Estalella
The panel’s format had the group present from the perspective of researchers examining the climate crisis from a distant future, looking back on how we solved it all. Very energizing!
Looking at where we want to be, and then figuring out how to connect the dots from here to there, is actually a great strategy aimed at a future that we can envision with hopeful anticipation rather than dread
Present-day Moscow as envisioned by our very forward thinking predecessors! 😉
Showing some of the animations Studioteka did for our site in 2100 NYC! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Presenting the ‘archaeological artifact from the year 2020’ to our 2100 audience! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Mission accomplished! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Gonzalo Herrero, Curator of the Architecture Department at the Royal Academy of Arts (RA) in London, giving the introductions and setting the stage for the panel Q and A
Gonzalo Herrero, one of the wonderful organizers of this event, thank you! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Question and Answer session with a very engaging audience! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Members of the audience challenged the panel with nsightful and engaging questions. Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Adolfo Estalella, one of the organizers and the moderator of our panel. Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Discussion among the very interdisciplinary panel was an incredibly insightful look at the city from myriad perspectives. Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Though we were not always in agreement, the discussion was always convivial, lively and thought provoking! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Members of the audience challenged the panel with nsightful and engaging questions. Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Talking about linkages between cities (I think!) Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
The audience in the event hall. Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Ethel Baraona, one of the fantastic exhibition curators and organizers, thank you! Credit: Matadero Madrid (@mataderomadrid) & Lukasz (@estudio_perplejo).
Of the 12 cities that you have seen, how many would you like to see become reality? Do you think or feel that they could be an advantage for humanity? Think through your response carefully.
Event program outside the venue, illuminated in red
Scenes from the opening night of the exhibition
Scenes from the opening night of the exhibition
Scenes from the opening night of the exhibition
Matadero is housed in what used to be a massive slaughterhouse. The buildings are enormous and perfectly suited to art installations, exhibitions and events
More opening night art!
Scenes from the opening night of the exhibition
Matadero’s many exhibitions and events proudly displayed
Part of the massive Matadero Art Center complex
An exhibition about the city, not what it is, but rather what it could be
A view from the massive central plaza of the complex walking towards the event
Another part of the complex, illuminated in red