Mobilizing pARisShannon Butts
In May 1968, students and workers in Paris took to the streets to protest unfair labor conditions and capitalist ideology. Over 11 million people marched through the city pasting posters and spraying Marxist graffiti on popular thoroughfares. Scholars have studied the iconic graffiti and posters in light of the historical narrative, but no one has mapped the art to specific areas and tracked the circulation of images as writing a mobility of the masses. I argue the images instigated people to move, writing a script in the streets that directed resistance and navigated protest. Beginning with posters and graffiti from May 1968, Mobilizing P(AR)IS maps the circulation of texts on the streets of Paris and creates an AR route that reunites the spread of images with the spread of people and protest. In the creation of an augmented reality application, the Mobilizing P(AR)IS project creates a walkable route that connects historic images and site-specific media. In following the AR prompts, users participate in the translation of the historic movements and media through contemporary technologies. Uniting the physical space of Paris and the digital tools of mobile technologies, this project maps the Marxist graffiti of historic Paris onto city streets to augment space, movements, and historical narratives.