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Architecture (MA)

ADS4: Plots, Props & Paranoia – How Architecture Stages Conspiracy

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2019 marked five decades since humankind first landed on the Moon. Despite the volume of evidence – including 382kg of moon rock, corroboration from Russia, Japan, and China, and images from NASA documenting tracks made by astronauts – today more than one in ten Americans believe it was a hoax.

Conspiracy theories are nothing new. A recent YouGov poll found that more than 60 per cent of British people believe at least one conspiracy theory about how the country is run, or the veracity of public information. Whilst outsiders and the disenfranchised have always embraced the existence of wild plots, in the last few years the “paranoid style” has gone mainstream. Distrust and paranoia now seem increasingly justified as appropriate responses to our contemporary, networked condition. In a world progressively determined by what many call New Conspiracism, it seems everything really is connected.

ADS4 explores – through the prism of theatre and performance – the logics of conspiratorial thought. Like theatrical productions conspiracies are staged, made up of criminal acts and crime scenes. By approaching the city as a scripted world, we have sought to create projects that speak to society’s inability to tell fact from fiction, truth from falsehood, conspiracy from conspiracy theory.

Tom Greenall and Matteo Mastrandrea with Alice Theodorou

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