Christchurch: A Transitional City Part IV is that rather fabulous looking book bound in brown paper. It documents Christchurch’s transitional projects, street art, and pop-ups. Architectural designer Barnaby Bennett presented the session. I found it difficult, not because of anything lacking in him but because the session was really aimed at Aucklanders. As Barnaby observed: “You could put anyone from Christchurch up here and they could talk about it eloquently.”
There were a lot of questions and discussion on Christchurch “Crisischurch”: CERA, Christchurch City Council, Gerry Brownle, Ngai Tahu …
Barnaby showed slides of things like the Pallet Pavilion, the Think Differently book exchange (the fridge), street art featuring bandaids, and even our own Central Library Peterborough got a look in.
I thought Barnaby’s observation that “Temporary things stay much longer and start to inscribe patterns of behaviour” was a valid one. We have certainly seen that happening. He mentioned that “things go into a liquid state before they start freezing” and that these transitional things are “crystallising”.
A challenging session and one that brought out to me that all of New Zealand needs to get a clue about what is happening in Christchurch. As Barnaby said, game playing in Auckland is based on what has been gotten away with in Christchurch.
He ended by saying:
Christchurch has brought out to me the lack of solidarity in New Zealand.