Air pnp - Living in a busstop

Lecture by Barbara Ungepflegt: Air pnp - Living in a bus stop (July 4th 2023)

@Combart - International Conference on Arts, Activism and Citizenship

The art intervention Air pnp - Air pause and peep (Barbara Ungepflegt, 2017 and 2020) can be
interpreted as an escape attempt that reflects the fragility of identities and the current precarious living situation: With the slogan of the rental platform Airbnb "Trust - everything works out" in mind, Barbara Ungepflegt moved into a specifically constructed extension of a bus stop of the bus line 5B at Vienna's Wallensteinplatz in September 2017 and allowed everyone to look over her shoulder while she lived there for two weeks. Similar to a semi-detached house, another transparent bus stop was added to the existing bus stop. The glass wall of the bus shelter functioned as a connecting and separating element between the fixed and temporary waiting areas. Air pnp thematises how one's own four walls are increasingly made available to solvent strangers and casts the intimacy, uncertainty and fragility (of life) into the public, into the outside. Dehousing is taking place: At home worldwide and constantly in search of one's own (self). At Air pnp, host Barbara Ungepflegt shares unique experiences with her (driving) guests who feel at home in public.
This trust is based on a proven observation system: the hostess observes her surroundings. And vice versa. Finally: The city is yours. Until the next bus comes. This work tries to illustrate how art can try to help people to find a way out of their own bubble, to try to make escape attempts. Following this goal, one of the questions underlying this presentation could be formulated as follows: What crises can art create to bring changes in supposedly regulated (crisis) systems?


@ Interdisciplinary Centre of Social Sciences (CICS.NOVA), Nova University of Lisbon
CITCEM - Transdisciplinary Research Centre "Culture, Space and Memory”
Institute of Communication at NOVA (ICNOVA), Nova University of Lisbon (Portugal)