Claiming the Cinema Space: Radical (Re)Communalization of Urban Space

I am going to talk about claiming the cinema space, and about the question of (re)communalisation of the urban space.I recently published a book called Stadtkonflikte. Radical Democracy in Architecture and Urban Planning. This book brings together the political theory of radical democracy with questions of architecture and urbanism within our contested, neoliberal urban condition. Claiming the cinema space, and also claiming a new urban space, might sound anachronistic, if we are honest. To ask for a Cinema of the Future, “future cinema”, as I have been doing together with Lars Henrik Gass and Alexander Horwath for some time, can seem as anachronistic as looking for the “museum of the future.”

In my text Das Museum der Zukunft als Zukunft aus urbanistischer Perspektiven I explored these ideas in relation to the museum space. Since the 1970s, when the original book Das Museum der Zukunft came out, people in the field have been exploring ideas about what a Museum of the Future might look like, and in this contemporary moment we find ourselves asking once again how we might reinvent this space. I believe the same applies to the cinema: we need to reinvent it, and proudly (not in a shy way) ask what the cinema might be in the 21st century. The reason why this feels anachronistic is that we are in the middle of platform economy and a fight for urban space. Everyone in the room is experiencing rapidly rising rents, and struggling with the impossibility of finding affordable, accessible urban space. How can we imagine a non-commercial idea of a Cinema of the Future within such conditions? …

Keynote of the Cinema of Commoning Symposium, Berlin 2022
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