IN COMPANY OF STRANGERS
Since the beginning of the Urban Millennium, humankind is facing the
biggest wave of urbanisation in human history. In 2011 Losekoot started a worldwide visual exploration on the effects of growing population density
on citizens inhabiting eight crowded megacities, entitled, ‘The Urban Millennium Project.’ George Simmel wrote, “One nowhere feels as lonely and lost as in the metropolitan crowd.” Thus, the anonymity of the human in the crowd is an important part of the metropolitan experience and Losekoot’s project. Excessive social growth affects a sense of personal space in an expanding public realm. There are unwritten social rules that provide each person with individual space and freedom, as long as others are left alone in personal space. Within certain boundaries, it is allowed to look at something in public that is actually private. Humankind observes the stranger in public areas of the city, when alone in the crowd and ‘in company of strangers.’
Bas Losekoot is Dutch-born artist and photographer, concerned with socio-cultural issues in cities around the world. He utilises cinematic techniques to challenge his viewers understanding of visual reality, social geography and ‘liminality’ in everyday city-life. Losekoot, wishes to question representational and factual narratives in documentary photography, and with an intuitive eye he visualises the human experience in modern megacities. His work has featured in the New York Photo Festival, Voies-Off/Les Rencontres d’Arles, France and Unseen Photo Fair, Amsterdam. ‘The Urban Millennium Project’ has been published in The New Yorker, Die Zeit, Volkskrant, CNN Editions, GUP, IMA Magazine and the British Journal of Photography.