This massive, detailed sculpture by Alexander Becherer titled Paratropolis is constructed from hardened polystyrene, wood, metal, cement and spray paint. Consisting of words and icons, the sculpture mimics an architectural model of a city and comments on current trends of urbanization.
Our current age, the 21st century, is characterized by worldwide urbanization, sprawling agglomerations of cities, and an increasing rural exodus. As recently as 1970 there were merely 3 so-called mega cities: New York, Tokyo, and Shanghai. Thirty years later there are already 24. This trend and transformation – and the continuing expansion of existing cities – impacts individual biographies as well as society as a whole.
Today more than 3 billion people – almost half of the world’s population – are living in ever growing and barely governable urban agglomerations. Studies predict that close to two thirds of the world population will be living in cities by the year 2030. For the first time in human history there will be significantly more people living in urban spaces than in rural areas.