Tobacna: Life of a Construction Pit

A building can be considered a type of intervention, using which people modify space to accommodate it with a wide palate of their needs. Naively observed, a typical lifespan of a building consists of construction, maintenance, and either restoration or demolition. Construction, or a birth phase, consists of several sub-stages such as building foundation, framing, roofing, plumbing, etc. When a building is completed, there is a constant need for a periodical maintenance. After some time without maintenance a building would typically get either restored or demolished. Restoration of course can happen even at a much later point in time, when the building is a ruin.

We can notice a constant nature’s tendency to increase entropy of everything that is part of it, including our buildings. Anthropocentrically, nature is turning everything into “chaos” and we are constantly intervening to bring “order”. Realistically, so called chaos is a state of balance and our interventions must be annoying disturbances.

I noticed a building frozen in an early stage of construction. It is still a construction pit, foundation for something huge. A fetus of a building. First thing that called me was a crane. I call it “a flag”. Then there was a fence, I call it “an invitation”. It is telling me two things – “you cannot enter” and “I cannot stop you” (unless it really can).

The place is pleasantly unusually and unusually interesting. Metal construction spikes, square columns, pools, metal nets, bare concrete walls, create a unique surreal aesthetic, that inspired me to photograph it. In the center of the pit I encountered an ideal exhibition spot, a set of uncovered bare concrete walls. I decided to use this space for hosting my own, self-organized exhibition. I photographed the space and exhibited the prints in the central open space area of the construction pit. In this way, I intervened into the space and added a parallel sub-branch of its evolution in time.