NO DOORS NO RAILS NO GATES

No doors, no rails, no gates


In a small town, there was a stairway paved with red bricks about four steps high. There was something about the stairs which was inviting us to walk through as it was out in the open. Interestingly this stairway entrance had no rails, no doors or gates, it was linked to the pavements and displayed as an open stairway. We turned towards the stairs but quite abruptly we then hesitated ‘Can we walk through there?’ why would a staircase out in the open make us question whether we could walk through?

This particular staircase intrigued me, although it was out in the open with no walls or rails attached there seemed to be an invisible margin. It was an unspoken understanding between me and my friends that somehow, we weren’t in the position to pass through. What channelled this hesitation was a little ahead behind the stairs the area had apartments with distinct character, with cream washed walls, glass balconies, palm trees here and there. The buildings carried a defined aura of luxury, perhaps this area including the stairs were private property? The stairs did seem like an entrance which leads toward the apartments. The materials of the blocks surrounding the red bricked stairs seemed to be maintained a good standard. The buildings carried a message which needn’t be visible with signs or extra security with metal gates, but showed through its material choice that the open area was not really open to all visitors passing by.

Passing by these stairs was a previous visit and this is a brief introduction to the topics I will further explore, these invisible boundaries the stairs displayed was the main inspiration for my expanded practice topic on passages and the unseen limitations.