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Turn your trash into… Rubbish, art and politics. Richard Wentworth's geographical imagination

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Abstract:

This paper analyses the photographs and installations of artist Richard Wentworth in order to examine his urban imagination and the cultural politics of rubbish that underlie it. In doing so this paper contributes more broadly to understandings of rubbish and material culture, and to geography's attention to artistic understandings and inhabitations of urban spaces. Central to this analysis are the geographies of Wentworth's work, its production, consumption and circulation. The paper attends to three nested sets of practices: the 'everyday' practices of people which draw Wentworth's eye, the potential of creative cultural practices for developing critiques of space and place, and the practices of the artist. As a result the paper pushes forward debates around the relationship between geography and art, reflecting on the analytical value of art practice to contemporary social-cultural geographies.

Keywords: art; critical spatialities; politics and poetics; rubbish; urban space

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649365.2010.522719

Affiliations: School of Geography, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK

Publication date: December 1, 2010

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