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HomeProjectsIntra-City, (De)Railway

Intra-City, (De)Railway

Hyunmin Lee

How can we uncover what is missing from the fast, safe railway journey and make a new narrative, attuning to the entanglement at the boundaries between cities?

“The world reveals itself not just as tracks and stations but as a dynamic ecosystem, with every species playing a vital role.”

The railway has been developed to transport resources, whether natural or human, to support ‘progress’. The Intercity train connects cities striving to secure fast and steady transportation of resources. The train stops at stations to load and unload the resources. Passengers in a rush perceive the route only as fragmented frames. As if laughing at the fantasy of progress, sometimes the trains stop in the middle of nowhere. Badgers burrowing beneath the railway or storks building their nests on the overhead electricity rod are treated as an invasion of the infrastructure, threatening progress. However, what if we see it as an invitation from a thing to engage us in more-than-human entanglement?

The exploration accepts the invitation from the nonhuman species and visits the boundaries where we just passed by. Multiple locations have been selected where the intercity trains proceed at full speed. Once derailed from the progress, the left-out pieces get noticed as a scene of entanglement. We encounter traces of other species at the vague boundary between the cities. Borrowing perspectives from the nonhuman species, a new narrative around the space is suggested, where things exchange dynamic movements. Stones from the borrow are incitements against the progress, and branches from the nest are invitations to the entanglement. 

The data from the exploration exhibit a conceptual railway that challenges the traditional notions of progress. The new narrative revises the Intercity railway to the Intra-city entanglement, where the focus shifts from linear progress to a symbiotic relationship with non-human entities.

This project embraces a range of more-than-human design methods, offering a compelling demonstration of its principles. The resulting exhibition represents a captivating exploration that encourages audiences to perceive the world around them through a refreshingly unconventional lens. By actively immersing itself in interactions with nonhuman entities, this project traverses extensive terrain. It not only redefines our comprehension of a journey, shifting from a human-centric perspective to a more-than-human perspective on train travel, but also provides insights into how various species intricately interconnect with our daily lives. Furthermore, it offers glimpses into how the world might appear when seen from their unique point of view, prompting us to envision a future where design solutions genuinely incorporate their viewpoints.

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