We don’t want you to see stuff you already know. We want to change the way you look at things. Look at dumb stuff in a different way so that it becomes interesting. Ways to entice you to get off the beaten path. Which means that you need to get out of the ordinary and experience the . . .

"Theory of the Dérive

One of the basic situationist practices is the dérive, (literally “drift” or “drifting.”) a technique of rapid passage through varied ambiances. Dérives involve playful-constructive behavior and awareness of psychogeographical effects, and are thus quite different from the classic notions of journey or stroll. In a dérive one or more persons during a certain period drop their relations, their work and leisure activities, and all their other usual motives for movement and action, and let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there. Chance is a less important factor in this activity than one might think: from a dérive point of view cities have psychogeographical contours, with constant currents, fixed points and vortexes that strongly discourage entry into or exit from certain zones. But the dérive includes both this letting-go and its necessary contradiction: the domination of psychogeographical variations by the knowledge and calculation of their possibilities. In this latter regard, ecological science, despite the narrow social space to which it limits itself, provides psychogeography with abundant data. . . . . " GUY DEBORD, 1958

[This translation by Ken Knabb is from the Situationist International Anthology (Revised and Expanded Edition, 2006). No copyright. ]

Psychotherapeutic dissection of the Big Box Civilization

Move between your points (Detroit to . . . point A to . . . point B . . . . Chicago) in the style of the dérive. Find and map the most deviant, a-typical big box situations. Find them by routing your trip in getting through the various destinations on your list through a particular trajectory, (a) pursuing leads or discoveries you make through Google Earth, and (b) by experimenting and meandering as you go along, discovering leads as you are on the road. When found, document with photographs, sketches, drawing. Purposeful disorientation can be very fruitful here. How you get from point A to Point B is important. Choose a route where you will find the most Big Boxes. The end game is to find the strangest, weirdest situation of the Big Box in its context. Like a car game, you have to be able to get off the highway and find them. We want you to change the way you look at things: not a dumb banal reality, big box civilization is instead a magical space full of drama, deviance and exotics.In the process . . .

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