May Mourn

May Mourn is a site-writing which takes a selection of images from a collection of abandoned black and white photographs of modernist architectural icons, part of London’s post war social housing project, found in spring in a derelict arts and crafts house called May Morn in the capital’s green belt and pairs them with texts taken from primelocation.com advertising flats for sale in these same buildings. The image-text pairs prompt a re-consideration of the modernist project and its socialist ideals. The images are dialectical images[1] in their own right ­– fossils of the modernist utopian dream – but paired with the aspirational desire expressed in language of the contemporary estate agent, is it possible to turn them forward, and align with hope, public as well as private?

Publication Details: ‘May Mourn’, Sophie Warren and Jonathan Mosely Beyond Utopia (Errant Bodies Press, 2012)

http://www.lespressesdureel.com/EN/ouvrage.php?id=2536&menu=


[1] Walter Benjamin’s concept of the dialectical image is far from straightforward, yet it is distinct in its attempt to capture dialectical contradiction in an instant as a visual image or object, rather than as an unfolding of an argument over time: ‘The dialectic, in standing still, makes an image.’ See Walter Benjamin, ‘Materials for the exposé of 1935’, in Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project (1927–39) translated by Howard Eiland and Kevin McLaughlin (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999), p. 911, see also p. 462.

Images: Caption for Image 1:
A spacious one bedroom flat situated on the eight floor, commanding marvellous views of communal gardens and the city beyond. The property is located in a Grade II listed ex-local authority block with two newly installed lifts giving easy access to the shopping, restaurants and transport facilities of Bayswater (Circle & District lines) and Queensway (Central line), plus overground routes of Paddington. Magnificent Kensington Gardens are also close by.

Caption for Image 2:
This property comprises of two double bedrooms and offers spacious living accommodation. The property is situated on the third floor and is in very good condition. The flat would be ideal for a first time buyer or a rental investment. It also benefits from being close to Roehampton university and local amenities.

Caption for Image 3:
A well-presented, bright one bedroom flat on the sixth floor of this Grade II listed modern block of flats, serviced by two lifts. This ex-council flat benefits from spacious rooms and communal gardens. The property is offered in good decorative order throughout further benefiting from being chain free.

Caption for Image 4:
A practical three bedroom flat split over two levels on the upper level of this small block in Churchill Gardens. The property requires updating but gives potential buyers the chance to put their own stamp on the property.

Caption for Image 5:
An unmodernised two bedroom flat set on the first floor (lift) of this block on the superbly located Hallfield Estate (Westminster Council) in Bayswater.
Occupying approximately 68 sq.m. once refurbished would make an excellent Central London home or long term rental investment.

Caption for Image 6:
Another great located flat for sale. The property offers a well proportioned one bedroomed flat located on the eight floor with great views (don’t worry about the mortgage, most high street banks will lend due to its excellent location).
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