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Psychogeography: Kenting 061113 Psychogeography: Kenting 061116
Psychogeography: Kenting 061120 Psychogeography: Kenting 061120
Use Pschogeography Method to know Kenting
Phoebe Man

According to Guy Debord (1955), Psychogeography is "the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of individuals." Maps are not always objective. They can be subjective, and changed by the thinking and experience of an individual.

Just imagine that you need tell your friend the way to your home. You mark all the attentive places. It can be a noisy red billboard or the big Mickey Mouse sticker outside a shop. It can also be the tasty smell of a bakery. The distance between a place and another place is not measured by a ruler. You just have a vague concept about close or far. This will be a unique map, full of typical experience and memory. This can be a piece of art.

"Pschogeography" this word first appeared in the 1st issue of a magazine of Situationist International. The members of Situationist International used "drifting" to do research on Pschogeography. They used automatic method and based on their intuition to decide where to go. They did this to break their own habit and to avoid the instruction/barrier given by the city planner. They want to study the relationship between human beings and space. Based on one's intuition is a method and they formed different rules. For example, they used smell to decide where to go. Sophie Calle followed strangers. Let the stranger bring her to different places. In 1999, AAA-Aotearoa followed a balloon and let it lead the ways. They continued their journey until the balloon disappeared. In the process of drifting, we might discover our desire and fear, and we can use another point of view to know a space.

During my visit in Kenting, I made 4 maps. All of them are based on the maps of the hotels. The organizer of the Pingtung Peninsula Arts Festival arranged me to stay in more than 4 hotels. Those hotels are carefully designed and very unique. My most favorite places of the hotels are those natural areas (no artifical design). For examples, the beach of Chateau Beach Resort has many crabs. Kenting Youth Activity Center has shells beach and volcano rock. There are a lot of fish, crabs, sea cucumber and echinus in Yoho Beach Club's coral reefs. Caesar Park Kenting Hotel's seashore footpath has a lot of butterflies, birds and small lizard. Not much architecture hinders the sky and ever changing sunset is all very impressive. I guess people live there may get used to this scenery. However, I came from a place where has a lot of buildings and a small sky and rivers are like ditches. You can imagine how exciting I was when I saw the scenery of Kenting. However, when I was happy with the natural landscape, I feel strange at the same time because there is a nuclear plant in this national park. I liked to watch TV in the hotels. I also feel weird to see TV commercials that introduce Vietnamese women like products. The news report is like soap opera. I also think that the lonely parrot in the hotel lobby might need a company. I transformed the maps of hotels with all these thought and feelings.

Maps always aim at objective, neutral, accurate and rational. If the space has any change physically, the map needs to be updated. Maps are also set by the authority. The users usually do not have any say. My Psychogeography: Kenting is subjective. The maps enlarged my experience of a space. It is irrational and imaginative. It is changeable and includes time element. I believe my Psychogeography: Kenting can also function as a map to show the way (what people normally want to go) and the position of the architecture (in the heart of an individual).