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Space of Refuge - Burj el Barajneh Camp, Lebanon

In Burj el Barajneh camp, as opposed to Baqa’a camp, the installation needed to be built on the ground --away from ascribing it to one building or form-- in a common area, which has a pragmatic and continuous daily use. This obviously being, to produce a superimposition of scales which could not only define the existing scale with a set of existing knowledge, but offer new knowledge emanating from the existing ones, and allowing for the production of new subjectivities. By constructing new scales –in the form of installations—on existing ones, not only is the existing form interrupted, but so is the existing spatio-movement and circulation. This rupture in space and circulation through the intersection of spatial scales, is exactly what this installation aimed to reveal and make visible, and could be considered as the “strategic function” within the apparatus –dispositif- concept. The rupture is made material through a literal application of a “superimposition”, a stacking if you will, of three different modes of producing space. The first mode retrieves the original spatial scale –considered the first architectural attempt at organizing the camp—, the relief scale of the zinc room (blue room in the installation), being 12m2 (3mx4m), and positions it within the existing fabric scale of the camp, causing a literal rupture to the concrete forms the 3x4 rectangle has caused in the act of intersection. The second mode of producing space experiments with a very possible notion of the camp’s existing material scale extending beyond its form today, yet originating from that specific form –lines--. And the third mode involved a more clearly Foucauldian exercise of stacking the existing grid onto itself while applying a “shifting”, to intentionally mask –cover—certain areas on the ground and reveal new ones in the form of new, potential space.