Shelley Harrison: Social Experiment (psychogeographical play) 

We’re Flocking! Play a part! Be an instigator!

Meet at Pro Arts Gallery at 2:00 pm.

“The ambiance of play is by nature unstable. At any moment “ordinary life” may prevail once again. The geographical limitation of play is even more striking than it’s temporal limitation. Every game takes place within the boundaries of its own spatial domain. Outside the neighborhood, beyond its fleeting and continually threatened changelessness, stretched a half-known city where people met only by chance. Losing their way forever. We could not expect nothing of anything that we ourselves had not altered.” – Guy Debord

This is where we get to go all out! Street Art Style, consciously traversing and culture jamming with our beautiful city. There is so much to play with here in Oakland: On our streets, in our parks, on the Bart, under the freeway, and so on and so forth.  This city is our empty canvas. Psychogeography is an approach to geography that emphasizes playfulness and “drifting” around urban environments. This practice takes us off our predictable path and helps us shift into a new awareness of our urban landscape.

About The Flock

Situationist theory sees the situation as a tool for the liberation of everyday life, a method of negating the  pervasive alienation that accompanied the spectacle.

In The Society of the Spectacle, a 1967 work of philosophy and Marxist critical theory, the commodities ruled the workers and the consumers, instead of being ruled by them. The consumers are passive subjects that contemplate the reified spectacle.

The experimental direction of situationist activity consisted of setting up temporary environments favorable to the fulfillment of true and authentic human desires in response.

The Flock is a performance. A collaboration. A game everyone can play. An augmented way of seeing the world. We drift through streets becoming utterly present. The world transformed. Perpetually at play. And dériving.

Shelley Harrison will lead two workshops at Pro Arts and as part of The New Situationists exhibition and related program of events. Each workshop will begin with short flocking introduction, then go further into explanation about that specific practice. Together, we will flock these “think tanks.”

Pro Arts’ The New Situationists exhibition and related program of events are made possible with a generous grant from The Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.