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Unknown Fields: Tales from the Dark Side of the City

Unknown Fields 6 Boxset Book Design
Tales from the Dark Side of the City

Commissioned by: Unknown Fields
Published by: Architectural Association, London
Art Direction, Design & Illustration: Neasden Control Centre & City Edition Studio


Treasured Island
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

A World Adrift
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

Never Never Lands
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

Snowing In The Super Computer
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

High Strange
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

The Breast Milk Of The Volcano
2016,
17x24cm,
64pp, Paperback

Commissioned by: Unknown Fields
Published by: Architectural Association, London
Art Direction, Design & Illustration: Neasden Control Centre & City Edition Studio

Tales from the Dark Side of the City

Unknown Fields is a nomadic design studio that ventures out on expeditions into the shadows cast by the contemporary city, to uncover the industrial ecologies and precarious wilderness its technology and culture set in motion. Tales from the Dark Side of the City is a book series that forms an atlas to the territories and stories of a city that stretches across the entire planet, a city that sits between documentary and fiction, a city of dislocated sites, of drone footage and hidden-camera investigations, of interviews and speculative narratives, of toxic objects and distributed matter from distant grounds. They are a collection of tales from the constellation of elsewheres that are conjured into being by the city’s wants and needs, fears and dreams.

The series includes stories developed from expeditions through Bolivia and the Atacama Desert, the Western Australian Outback, the South China Sea and Inner Mongolia, the gemfields of Madagascar, Far North Alaska and the black sites of the United States.

Books available to purchase from AA Bookshop:

How did your working relationship with Neasden Control Centre develop, and what was it about his work and approach that felt appropriate for this project?

“We first approached Steve when we were planning our expedition through Chernobyl. We invited him to travel with us, documenting the trip graphically and developing the visual language of the studio. In the same way that a journalist embeds themselves within a military division, we were interested in having an artist chronicle the sites we were visiting in the same way. As our work is engaged with narratives around technology, we wanted to collaborate with an artist that still works by hand, where the processes of making an image are embedded in its final form. His work has an authenticity and a grittiness that contrasts with the dominant media representations of technology. The mythology of technology is that it is produced in clean rooms by autonomous robots, but in reality a device like a mobile phone is handcrafted by a million fingers scattered around the world. It is this provocation that is evident in his design for the Unknown Fields books.”

Liam Young / Kate Davies Unknown Fields