While researching other walking projects, I have seen quite a few have been definited as psychogeography. What exactly is psychogeography? According to the Toronto Psychogeography Society,
The word psychogeography was coined by the Situationist Guy Debord. It describes the specific effects of the geographical environment on the emotions and behaviour of individuals.
So what does it mean to take a psychogeographic walk and how exactly does it differ from just taking a “regular” walk? The Toronto Psychogeography Society offers some clues in the descriptions of some its past outings. It appears that (unlike the my walks for this project!) a psychogeographic walk does not generally have a planned route, that the walkers might follow something that interests them: a sight, a smell, a sound. From further research, I found that there is also algorithmic or generative psychogeography, which follows a repeating pattern, such as “go two blocks and turn right, go two blocks and turn left, go one block and turn right, and then repeat.” I also saw variations on these ideas, such a walk pattern that was written as a pseudo computer program, Then I found Conflux, a NYC “festival for contemporary psychogeography,” which seems much broader than the traditional definitions of psychogeography and appears to include more of the types of projects that I mentioned in my previous Why People Walk post.
I ran across a few psychogeography events in the Bay Area, but nothing so far that seems to be active. Eventually (once I am finished with my current walk) I would like to do a psychogeography walk in Berkeley. Please post a comment if you happen to know of anyone who is already this or if you might be interested in joining in on such a walk.