Charlie Tweed is one of four artists aspex will be presenting at EMERGENCY5 who works in the medium of video. An artist and curator based in London, Charlie’s film entitled Archimeters focuses on the city of Ordos, a city located in Inner Mongolia, China, which has been newly built but remains almost entirely unpopulated.
Charlie’s film contains images of Ordos, and describes a plan for appropriating the town and constructing ‘a fully integrated auto poietic and auto effective mechanism.’ This is echoed in the choice of voice-over for the film, which is made up of text taken from software testing handbooks.
In Charlie’s words the text was selected on account of ‘its focus on creating a fully integrated and predictable, self-sufficient system, that continually improves itself and enhances its method of control over all things.’
I found Charlie’s film completely fascinating. At first I thought I was watching computer-generated images – such is the effect of viewing images of this somewhat futuristic unpopulated city. The soundtrack is kind of hypnotic also, and adds to the other-worldly feeling of the piece. It was only when I googled Ordos that I understood the near-empty city really does exist, alongside several other similar towns in China, completed to a high civic standard, with attractive public buildings and significant infrastructure, but a distinct lack of residents.