Posts tagged the zone
“Ghosts used to be either the likeness of the dead or wraiths of the living. But here in the Zone categories have been blurred badly. The status of the name you miss, love, and search for now has grown ambiguous and remote, but this is even more than the bureaucracy of mass absence- some still live, some have died, but many, many have forgotten which they are. Their likenesses will not serve. Down here are only wrappings left in the light, in the dark: images of the Uncertainty…”
–Thomas Pynchon,Gravity’s Rainbow
Dark Ecology appears as an aesthetic concern, as a way of shaping or focusing thought, a method of holding contradictions open and unresolved without falling into paralysis, a tuning fork that resonates in particular soundfields, as extra layers of clothing to protect against ‘the elements’, reinforced, yet permeable boundaries between the human organism and the environment (habitat/habitus).
The next generations of zone, as they incubated in China’s Special Economic Zones or in Middle Eastern city-states essentially swallowed the whole of the city and rendered urbanism as service industry. China’s experiment with the market was so successful that it has generated its own global urban networks of zone trading centers. For Dubai, reawakened by oil for a new chapter in global trade, the zone is a fresh form of entrepôt not unlike those in ancient episodes. No longer in the shadow of the global city as financial center (New York, London, Tokyo, Sao Paulo) the zone has now quickly overtaken it, offering a wilder more hyperbolic form that mixes off-shore financial districts, logistics parks, manufacturing facilities, educational campuses or technology villages. The zone has become the world city and the glittering mimic of Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong. Ranging from spaces of a few hectares to conurbations that are hundreds of square kilometers, the scores of zone variants—each a newly minted cocktail of urban aspiration.