THE "EMBASSY" CONCEPT
The Embassy for Refugees claims a territory for those that seek refuge in our city. It is a space of representation and sanctuary at the very heart of London and seeks to give ambassadorial status to a humanitarian issue. Can diplomacy be employed for the marginalised rather than the powerful? Representation for the misrepresented?
The project investigates whether the arts can mediate relations between different people, places and organisations. The Embassy aims to catalyse debate and dialogues between different, normally divergent groups. It also questions whether diplomatic engagement of a social issue is possible through design.
The Embassy project is at once celebratory and provocative, an intimate space of sanctuary but also a platform for humanitarian advocacy in its use. The project explores whether art, design and architecture can extend the boundaries of the discussion about refuge. Can the concept of sanctuary be re-framed as an architectural value and spatial ethic?
SANCTUARY, SPACE AND ARCHITECTURE
The Embassy for Refugees facilitates a 'call to action' for a public conversation about sanctuary as well offering a tranquil, safe space for people, to come together in both iconic city sites and local spaces. It spatially stakes out the symbolic importance of sanctuary within the public domain.
Legacy for the Embassy pavilion
The pavilion will continue to emerge in locations around the city and beyond, transforming each time it re-emerges in a variety of festivals, community projects, art spaces and urban sites. Re-emerging as a “Transient Sanctuary”, it will investigate different interpretations of the idea of sanctuary in the public realm.