Architecture of Appropriation |


Together with Cedric van Parys (studio CCXD) and Jens Jorritsma (ZUS architects) Studio KNOL was invited to explore São Paulo from an insider’s perspective.

In a short 4-day workshop we explored and visualized the term ‘Architecture of Appropriation’ by building an assembly in collaboration with a movement of former homeless people (MSTC). As a combative movement this group is committed to the many homeless people of São Paulo and the importance for housing opportunities in the city center. The appropriation of vacant (office) buildings in the prosperous city center became their most important form of action. Together with MSTC we built an assembly: a place to get together, to inform, to learn, to mourn, to enjoy. A church but also a living room. In addition to this assembly, we examined multiple forms of appropriation, including ‘pixelados’, a popular form of graffiti from the favelas.

This project was part of the 11th edition of the São Paulo Architecture Biennial. Commissioned by: Het Nieuwe Instituut. Project in cooperation with our Brazilian collegue Ricardo Gusmão from GOAA

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Together with the students of Ecola da Cidade, we developed one single piece of furniture that could be combined and used as a seat, bench, altar, bar, shelves, table, flowerpot etc. The shape of the furniture was based on the logo of Sao Paulo, but—to make a statement against the Sao Paulo regime— it was split in half.