So I admit it. It has been 14 months since the Westfield Shopping Centre [one of the largest in Europe] opened in Stratford, East London and I haven’t shopped there even once although I am a local. I do have to pass through these days though to coach a running group. Having a few minutes to spare this week I found myself looking at a large store window. As a writer of future dystopian fiction and hugely interested in architecture/the urban environment I’m glad that I did.
The vast 5.5m by 2.5m filmic mural instillation piece [a large matte painting with three flat screens embedded] made for the Samsung UK flagship store creates a near future London, part ‘hyper capital’, part suburbia of favelas.
In a touch reminiscent of demolished tower blocks being reconstructed by filmstock running backwards, here shining new glass buildings materialise in short order in the landscape in a manner akin to the night time city remodelling by the ‘strangers’ in the 1998 Alex Proyas neo-noir science fiction film Dark City [Great to hear Proyas has a new project in hand, also in the realm of the fantastic, based on the graphic novel Joe Golem And The Drowning City by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola].
One does wonder though [especially brought home by flooding in New York this week] whether, when ‘near future’ time arrives in London, it will be underwater? Here’s an interesting project imagining a floating city alternative given that prospect come 2030.