Friday, May 15, 2009

Terrace

Very much of the Pembroke Road, this shot. Eventually all the houses in this Terrace will have been renovated and it will lose that faintly shabby look that I liked. Familiarity is interesting. The things we pass everyday lose the capacity to shock or even arouse our interest. But if you go away for a few years and come back, the chances are that things will have changed. The terraces here used to be occupied by people renting. The poet, Patrick Kavanagh, lived in this terrace at one stage (and apparently he was not that timely in paying his rent). What would Kavanagh make of this current period? He was quite conscious of his environment and, in all likelihood, would not have liked that spurious term, the environment. The term environment moves us uneasily from the part -a fragment of space more or less occupied by objects - to the whole, which is more or less empty. Lefebvre observes that to the question "who's environment?" or "what environment?", there is no pertinent answer forthcoming. In renovation and protection of old buildings we like to raise the notion of historic as if it's somehow natural. There's nothing natural about the city - which is merely composed of buildings, signs, functions and structures.