Which way to Utopia?

Municipal Market of Kypseli
Fokionos Negri 42

Wednesday, 04.06.2008

Each spiritual state that is unconventional or exceeds the direct elements of reality is not necessarily a utopian one, since in this case “utopia” could deteriorate to the level of a mere intellectual exercise or a way to escape reality without nonetheless generating any substantial results.

The utopian spirit is not always the opposite of realism neither a synonym of the unreal and the unattainable per se. On the contrary, it is exactly the element that often makes the real world a bearable place. Hence, utopia is in a dialectic relationship with reality since it incorporates both the tendency to clash or subvert the existing status quo and the possibility to fulfill what we desire to become, above and against experiential reality. This fundamentally subversive core of utopia is exactly what differentiates it from ideology.

According to Ernst Bloch, man is a utopian being who encompasses all his unrealised yet capacities but also the possibility -hidden within- to surpass and subvert experiential reality. Though possibility is what “protects the world from morbid rigidness and allows a better world to be born” it cannot materialize by itself. The emergence of man’s utopian action and the concept of the latent potentialities of what hasn’t been can be realized only through human activity.


The more people react to their environment and modify it based on a human plan, the more they live in a utopia. According to Bloch the “what hasn’t been” is also the “here and now”. The utopian spirit raptures the present, the every day life of the individual translating probably to what the Zapatistas say: ”we are ordinary people thus revolutionaries”.

How can we still dream after experiencing the 20th century in which utopias failed, potentialities proved appalling and peoples’ dreams and hopes ended up in destitution and disaster? What’s the relation of utopia with reality, of revolution with everyday life? How can utopian experiences (utopian concepts, experimentation, attempts to implement action plans) converse with the political and social stakes of the 21st century?

Relevant concerns and questions will be the pivotal points of the action “Which way to utopia?” taking place in the Municipal Market of Kypseli in June, 4-20. It will include an art exhibition, a 3 day special event on the Situationists (with round tables, film screenings, readings, walks) and group meetings that will participate in discussions and will draft a declaration of positions about the city.

Action organized (with the support of participants) by

Dimitris Halatsis, Katerina Nasioka


4-20.06.2008 | art exhibition


Akiro Hellgardt, Andrea Hartinger, Markus Paetz, David Hahlbrock Ulli Emert, George Angelakis, Yannis Alexakis, Andreas Vousouras, George Georgakopoulos, Dimitris Georgakopoulos, Babis Dermatis, Nikos Kazeros, Angy Karatza – Maria Boufi, Alexandros Mangniotis, Stavros Bonatsos, Ioanna Myrka, Christina Parakante – Niki Georgoulia,, Christina Sgouromiti, Heleni Girgilaki – Manos Kornelakis – Stefanos Hatzelis, Dimitris Halatsis, ()


Urban Void, Nomadic Architecture Network, Network Void, Reconstruction Community, ΟΜΙΟ

11.06.2008 | walk…………………….

        1. | situationists (round tables, films and footage screenings, readings)

13.06.2006 | 20:00 Open discussion on the topic “Formulas for a new spatial planning…”

Presentations by:

| 23:00 Film screening

14.06.2008 | 20:00 Open discussion on the topic “Utopia and reality – Revolution and every day


Presentations by: …

| 23:00 Film screening …

15.06.2008 | 20:00 Open discussion on the topic : «Situationists International: Ideas,

influences …»

Presentations by:

| 23:00 Film screening …

18.06.2008 | the utopian text

(…) open meeting of all the participating groups, discussion on the utopia of the city and drafting of a declaration of positions