Danish visual artist Kirstine Autzen portrayed Superkilen as it is in Summer 2017. For Autzen, photographing a public space means taking in impressions, and at the same time making images that convey these impressions in a strictly visual manner: grabbing the camera precisely when someone or something does something. Autzen states that photographing in itself is a kind of analysis. She traversed the area several times, waiting for the opportunity to photograph a specific situation with, for instance, the right light or passers-by, and in doing so, she starts to feel at home and to see the design as an underlying structure or intention. The choice of when and how to hit the shutter is to her, in essence, normative and ostensive: ‘THIS I like’; ‘THAT I don’t like’, pointing and pointing out through the photographic image. The images then speak of positive and negative experiences and are a way of declaring ‘authorship’ and to indicate a norm for engaging with the world.
The images of Superkilen presented here were made with no client in mind. They are about the relationship between the Superkilen design and its surroundings, and the way people were using it. Autzen noted seeing people everywhere: going through on their bikes, hanging out informally, playing. Though feeling sad about the poor maintenance, the intense use by a wide variety of people was uplifting. Autzen sums up her experience: “Superkilen now feels like well-worn sneakers that lost their factory colours: worn out, but ready for real love.”
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