Fairisle's Journal

22 Feb 2012 | Alex Head - Berlin, Germany



Leslie Fairisle arrived on the Köpenickerstr 36 Wasteland site in the middle of January. I first noticed him loitering about the edge of the river on a particularly chilly Sunday morning. As you will note from the following extracts taken from Fairisle’s journal he claims to have been undertaking an investigation for a party interested in acquiring the land. He refers to his employers only as The Company, presumably to conceal their identity from other prospective real estate speculators. However Fairisle seems to have fallen out with The Company and during our last meeting he entrusted extracts from his journal and personal diary to me, including observations and a map of the wasteland believing that I might find a use for the material. Although strange, Fairisle’s observations do give an insight into certain aspects of the site’s character from the perspective of someone unfamiliar with the city and specifically the Berlin Wasteland.

In honour of Fairisle’s diligent inquiry I have chosen to relay the extracts entrusted to me here, on the wasteland research blog. In addition I have taken the decision to present his journey and findings to the principal parties that were the early focus of his investigation - the Köpi 137 squat and trailer park, Köpenicker Studios and the Radial Systems V events venue that stands on the opposite side of the river Spree. It is my aim that in this way, despite the termination of his contract, a little of the Leslie Fairisle’s work might live on.

Fairisle's Journal


January 10th | The Case Begins

Investigation of plot: 52.508983/13.426816
Sent the following message to London Office: 

Observations Concerning plot: 52.508983/13.426816, Köpenickerstr 36/Bona-Peiser-Weg, Berlin, Germany

L. Fairisle, 10.01.2012

Dear Sirs,

Concerning your initiation of an enquiry into the above location I have this day met with the arranged contact here in Berlin, Germany. The company’s desire that I examine the site for unusual activity shall be at the forefront of my enquiries. Though I respect your judgement in withholding any further information in order not to contaminate or predetermine my findings, I must admit my curiosity was spiked during the briefing with Mr Christopher. He revealed the fact that a number of fixed, radiating heat pools, deployed in a seemingly arbitrary fashion have been identified by the satellite monitor. These then shall be the initial subjects of inquiry.

Yours Truly,

L. Fairisle

January 15th | Personal Note

My logical course of action to discover the ‘unusual’ occurrences The Company are so keen to reveal, will be to establish which phenomena might be considered ‘usual’ on this particular plot of land. Indeed I must attempt to suspend all subjective impulses when entering the space so as to dissolve any a-priori assumptions concerning its use and user-ship.

Site visit tomorrow morning.

January 16th | Day 01

Arrived on site at approximately 9.00am entering through a trampled steel door on Köpenickerstr. Not a soul to be seen. Nor reason anyone would be in my view – for without the offer of refreshment, business or lodgings the land seems a rather inhospitable place. Why am I here I ask myself. Following an introductory circuit of the land my first task has been to draft a cursory map of the plot and its immediate surroundings. In order to make contact with people who use the site I have tied several pieces of chalk to a variety of objects and fencing with the hope that they will impart some record of their presence there.

Unable to send a satisfactory report to London Office. Concerning my goal of establishing a series of common or normal activities I have made but the following scant observations:

1/ Due to the tracks of heavy machinery I believe that the land might be being used as a test site for learner drivers of industrial diggers.

2/ It would appear that a great many others share The Company’s interest in plot: 52.508983/13.426816. A steady stream of investigators or explorers progressed through the site today via the heavily breached security measures. They walk nonchalantly over battered fencing and barbed wire or emerge suddenly over the fence of the abandoned ice factory, hitting the cold ground just a little too hard, clutching their knees and hobbling away in a curious, half comic pose. I notice that when people enter the openness of Köpenickerstr 36/Bona-Peiser-Weg it is as if they become invisible characters acting out the intricacies of some internal, imagined journey. I can only deduce that they think of me in the same manner...


Editors Note: This early map serves as a quick summary of Fairisle’s observations including the site’s basic layout and access points marked with a box crossed by a single stroke: [\]


January 21st | Day 05 | Breakthrough

Exciting day on site

Sent the following report to London Office:

 Observations Concerning plot: 52.508983/13.426816, Köpenickerstr 36/

Bona-Peiser-Weg, Berlin, Germany

L. Fairisle, 21.01.2012

Dear Sirs,

Our first breakthrough – the satellite images depicting a series of heat radiating coordinates have been identified as an array of canine faecal deposits. (No doubt Mr Christopher will be overjoyed!) I arrived at this milestone by observing the land from the vantage point of the neighbouring ice factory. My suspicion is that the deposit’s configuration holds some clue to the lands usage and could thus contribute to our profile of normal and abnormal phenomena. No sooner had I made this discovery than I conducted an extensive survey of the land’s canine excrement before focusing on specific ‘hot spots’ of study. I then entered the positions of the matter into a grid system creating what we might anticipate to be a series of related coordinates. Needless to say without the proper equipment and expertise my immediate course of action has been to send our data to a Dr Brozka, senior lecturer and cryptographer at the University of Košice, Slovakia. We await the results.

Yours Truly,

L. Fairisle

Editors Note: During one of our conversations we stood together on the rooftop of the abandoned ice factory. From this vantage point Fairisle and I took two photographs:

The land with Köpenicker Studios to the far right. The darker building to the immediate left of the Studios is the Köpi 137 squat & trailer park

The edge of the land and river Spree, opposite and to the left stands Radial Systems V


January 25th  | Day 09 | Excretian Riddles


Šrobárova 2

041 80 Košice

Slovak Republic


Dr Brozka, University of Košice 24.01.2012

Dear Mr Fairisle,

I trust this letter finds you well. Fortunately I have been able to examine your data with some alacrity. I offer my findings to you in the attached envelope. With your permission I should like to present your investigation to the Scatology Department here at the University next semester. Do keep us informed of your progress. 

Please find enclosed an invoice for the agreed fee.

With Best Wishes,

Dr Brozka


I believe Dr Brozka has contributed some remarkable analysis to the case. It transpires that when enlarged at a scale of 1:113px and applied to my rudimentary map the results begin to suggest  ‘desire lines’ or routes of usage. I conclude that these paths have been moulded into the landscape by the repeated footfall of man and beast over the period of many years. This would also explain the great frequency of canine deposits and provide evidence that dog walking is indeed one of the sites usual uses!

Produced the following by overlaying Dr Brozka’s findings onto my map.

Sent to London Office.






January 28th | Day 12 | A Letter from London

I have worked hard and through hostile conditions to confirm the proposal of my thesis: that the heat sensitive satellite imaging describes a regular deployment of canine matter in a chaotic and complex system. However the value of this information does not seem to have registered with The Company and I am to be closed down indefinitely from the beginning of February. Alas my time here is to have been fruitless. I am discharged from the case before I have even begun to analyse the Doctors decrypted material in any depth! For now I bid this city farewell.









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