TAKING PLACE / ALEX WERTH
IN A TIME OF INTENSE BUT UNEVEN DISPLACEMENT, THIS MAP ASKS US TO COLLECTIVELY PLOT: WHERE/WHEN DO WE TAKE PLACE?
Taking Place is an open-ended exploration of the spatial and historical context--at the crossroads of the Uptown and West Oakland, disinvestment and redevelopment--in which one part of MATATU16 materially takes place. It asks us to consider the ways that, within our existing urbanism, the spaces in which we take place may also involve taking the place of. We invite you to add your observations, stories, and memories to the map by visiting takingplace.ushahidi.io. You can also tweet them at #MATATU16 and #takingplace.
Taking Place is a project of geographer Alex Werth, with support in kind from Ushahidi. Taking its name from the Swahili term for "testimony" or "witness," Ushahidi is a Kenyan non-profit that empowers anyone with a cell phone to contribute geo-data to collective mapping efforts. Its software has been used to visualize everything from anti-migrant violence in South Africa to sites of earthquake-related devastation in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Taking Place is one of the first Ushahidi deployments dedicated to crowd-sourcing stories in what might be called a "slow crisis" of uneven urban development.
Yrsa Daley-Ward is a writer and poet of mixed West Indian and West African heritage. Bone is her most recently published work.
For six years, Amir Sulaiman has been writing an epic love poem about someone, and about love itself as the why/how the universe was created.
Oakland artists take on a massive mural downtown, only to find themselves at the center of gentrification and cultural resiliency debate.
Hassan Hajjaj, considered "the Andy Warhol of Morocco," paints a more complex vision of contemporary Islamic gender roles.
A French-Ivorian, who grew up in upper class French society, unpacks socio-economic privilege and racial discrimination in France today.
A visual and musical journey through the fantastical funeral rituals of South Vietnam, with parallels to those of New Orleans.
Alex Werth is a geographer and dj. Currently a doctoral candidate in the Department of Geography at UC Berkeley, his research looks at the regulation of expressive practices, spaces, and groups within the framework of “public safety” as a driver of cultural foreclosure and communal displacement in Oakland, CA.
It also looks at how many of those same practices, especially music and dance, enable forms of coordination and collectivity that run counter to notions of “the public” written into law, ordinance, and capital.
He dj’s as Wild Man.