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HEX in the CITY Part 1 / 9 February 2015

'Look Up Look Around Look Down' cover of photobook by Katya Robin

'Look Up Look Around Look Down' cover of photobook by Katya Robin

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Awareness of hexagonal pattern and structures in the city crept up on me.  It was through little explorations around the city centre that the patterns and shapes got into me.

There is nothing aimless about my exploration of the city.  It is hemmed in by access limitations.  The quality of the pavements, do the dropped curbs connect, or leave mobility-aid users stranded disconnected from onward journey?

It’s all about advance assessment. Might the return journey be too long, too steep? I cannot risk sudden exhaustion, or my batteries getting discharged. Always erring on the side of caution, missing out on the stimulation of free-form exploration and risk.

I liked walking Pablo the dog around town because it’s more reliably accessible. The city may not seem a natural space to wander and exercise your dog. But it’s a stimulating environment for doggie Parkour and canine-led psychogeography.

Avoiding the crowded shopping areas we explored the lesser-used but still accessible back roads, looking for low walls for agility, stalking pigeons. We circled the city’s fountains, Pablo cantering, my mobility aid set to ‘hare’.   It was due to trundling around, ambling along with the dog, or you could call it going for a dérive, that I chanced upon the in-between spaces in the city that I’d previously actively ignored.

Keywords:  access, limitations, pavements, cities, urban environment, dog, independence, psychogeography, dérive.