In January 2008, a fictional character called robinson, newly released from a fictional prison, resumed his activities as a wandering, erratic scholar of landscape: ‘Equipped with an ancient cine camera … he made images of his everyday surroundings … He believed that he could communicate with a network of non-human intelligences … They were determined to preserve the possibility of life’s survival on the planet, and enlisted him to work on their behalf …’. Ten months later ‘a box containing 19 film cans and a notebook’ was discovered in a derelict caravan. Its contents were arranged by a team of researchers as a film, Robinson in Ruins (2010), and, later, as The Robinson Institute which combined a selection of the film images with other works.
To accompany the installation of The Robinson Institute at Tate Britain, filmmaker Patrick Keiller includes in this book a similar selection of images, predominantly from Robinson in Ruins and the Tate Collection, which consider the origins of the current economic crisis, and effectively serve to illustrate the development of capitalism through the details of landscape.
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