A NEW LONDON TOPOGRAPHY  -  Thursday October 8th, 2009

A quick collage I did to suggest a future London topography: Buckingham Palace finds itself under the resurfaced Tyburn river (currently buried), which also makes Westminster and Big Ben into an island (as it was, until the 18th century); London Pool has become a massive tidal marsh and most of the suburbs have been turned to tilled fields. Only the very core of the old city remains with its 2 million inhabitants, each one perturbed by the primordial dreams that visit them in their restless sleep…

More on the present struggle with a new architectural zeitgeist early next week: below another rapid image demonstrating ‘human geology’ – an amazing map from 1863 of the geology of England and Wales (London zoom) (legend).

  1. Kevin Clement says:

    Awesome project, keep us informed on how it goes. The London Renaissance you referred to earlier, are you considering this a sort've worldwide phenomenon, where pilgrims come from China or India to study the sublime and paint Billy Turner knock-offs? What would be the impetus for something like this to happen?

  2. Jack Self says:

    That's an interesting take on it – unfortunately I had all the steam knocked from my sails when my tutors pointed out that it sounded like all I was doing was proposing a neo-post-modernism.


    The work I am doing directly at the AA is over at Inter 7 to keep Millennium People 100% Millennium Pure.

  3. Tristan says:

    If the world population declines, as I fervently hope it will over time (lest Malthus be proved right), then this will become an issue facing the sprawling cities… How will they shrink? Will it be a sea of abandoned and rotting buildings (like half the Soviet Union is now) or will it be something more akin to your collage. I wonder if we'll be around to watch.

  4. Jack Self says:

    It's a bit like watching any of those disaster films – the heros are driving along and suddenly an asteroid rips across the sky and you're all like 'wow. that's awesome, I wish I could see that, but not be there.' and then you suck on your coke and pop some corn and realise that's exactly what is happening. I guess I like dreaming about the architectural equivalent of this double-think desire to indulge in destruction. *Nods at Ballard*