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The Garage



First published 1990, in the catalogue for Some Detached Houses, an exhibition curated by Bill Jeffries for the Contemporary Art Gallery, 555 Hamilton Street, Vancouver BC, March 29 - April 22, 1989. Republished in Geist, Volume 1, Number 2, Spring 1991.

THE GARAGE

It is neither in the house nor out of the house, but of the house and somewhere in between, just as it sits between the house and the suburb. It is an open interior space, not exactly neutral, between inside and outside: the zone of transition, the transitional passage, the residence of transit, the exit and the entrance (double doors), the social airlock for car culture. Sic transit gloria mundi. Leaving the house to enter the car which waits in the garage to drive to the city which waits; arriving in the garage from the city before entering the house. The garage is at the edge of the house as the suburb is at the edge of the city, as the suburb is the garage of the city. Open. Ended. Disrupted syntax. Like a dangling participle or subordinate clause, it is distinguished by its disconnectedness, by its incompleteness and its dependence. Gerundial: garaging. In the garage is in limbo, in transit. Unclaimed. Originally it was the porte cochere, the covered annex attached to the house for the carriage, where you could get out of the weather and into the vehicle, or out of the vehicle and into the house. But the vehicle didn't live there; it was just passing through. The separate garage, shed home of the vehicle, moved farther away from the barn and closer to the house. until the two were wedded, in acknowlegment of their inseparable dependence. It made the everyday separation from nature complete:

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