Issue #39, 2011

Pattern Protects and Rural Practices, Future Strategies
Marjetica Potrc

Pattern Protects andRural Practices, Future Strategies are two series of drawings by Marjetica Potrcˇ, which are based on her experience and involvement with particular forms of community or urban self-organization in places remote from each other, such as the Western Balkans and the Amazonian forest. Marjetica Potrcˇ is not a planner architect and she is not a studio artist. She works with the means and methods of both professions to imagine the impossible, to shape and craft prototypes of the future, to observe people’s endless solutions for improving their lives, highlighting their bright simplicity and functionality. In the absence of state regulation that can make them justice, people invent alternative forms of economy, architecture, nature-use or government. These are pre-modern, archaic “patterns” of living, which privi­lege the well-being, joy and vivid colour of micro-communities against the profit-driven grey development masked as abstract progress. At the same time, these com­munities’ use of technology, mobility and education brings them on the vanguard lines of the struggle for a sustainable future.

The drawings of Marjetica Potrcˇ compare the outcomes of this struggle in different parts of the globe, and prove them similar in their applicability. The statements derived from these comparisons and observations remind of revolutionary slogans, some of which can be read these days on placards in the streets of the big cities, demanding for a decent, dignified life. It seems in some communities in the world this already exists. We only need to acknowledge and learn from them, to protect and to celebrate them.(Raluca Voinea)

Marjetica Potrc is a Ljubljana-based artist and architect. Her work has been exhibited extensively throughout Europe and the Americas. Her on-site projects using participatory design include Dry Toilet (Caracas, 2003) and The Cook, the Farmer, His Wife and Their Neighbour(Stedelijk goes West, Amsterdam, 2009). She has taught at various schools, such as the MIT (2005) and IUAV University of Venice (2008, 2010). Since 2011, she teaches at HFBK Hochschule fuer bildende Künste in Hamburg. She is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, most notably the Hugo Boss Prize (2000) and the Vera List Center for Arts and Politics Fellowship at The New School in New York (2007).