Lawrence Abu Hamdan
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Jacob Burns is a writer and current MA student in the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London. After completing his BA in History of Art at Goldsmiths he worked with the Naming the Dead project at the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in London. He is co-organizer of “Grounding: Philosophy and the Law,” an INC philosophy lecture series at Goldsmiths (2013–2014). He is a research assistant on the Forensic Architecture project, focusing on the drone strike investigation.
Gabriel Cuéllar is an architect. He obtained an Advanced Master of Architecture from the postgraduate program at the Berlage Institute in Rotterdam. After graduating from Carnegie-Mellon University in 2008, he worked with various offices in the US, Switzerland, France, and the Netherlands. In 2011, he was project leader for the winning Taichung Gateway Park competition with Philippe Rahm architects. Since 2012 he has been working collaboratively in his own architecture practice, Relation.
DAAR (Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency) is an art and architecture collective and a residency program based in Beit Sahour, Palestine. The group’s core members are Sandi Hilal, Alessandro Petti, and Eyal Weizman. DAAR’s work combines discourse, spatial intervention, education, collective learning, public meetings, and legal challenges. DAAR’s practice is centred on one of the most difficult dilemmas of political practice: how to act both propositionally and critically within an environment in which the political force field is so dramatically distorted. It proposes the subversion, reuse, profanation, and recycling of the existing infrastructure of a colonial occupation. DAAR projects have been shown in various biennales and museums, among them Venice Biennale, the Bozar in Brussels, NGBK in Berlin, the Istanbul Biennial, The Architecture Biennale Rotterdam, Home Works in Beirut, Architekturforum Tirol in Innsbruk, the Tate in London, the Oslo Triennial, the Centre Pompidou in Paris, and many other places. DAAR’s members have taught lectured and published internationally. In 2010 DAAR was awarded the Prince Claus Prize for Architecture, received the Art initiative Grant, and was shortlisted for the Chernikov Prize. DAAR’s projects are documented in the book Architecture after Revolution (Sternberg Press, 2013).
Grupa Spomenik/Monument Group (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jelena Petrović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić) is an art-theory group that has been producing public space for a political and critical-ideological discussion of the wars in the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia and their consequences. It has initiated reading and discussion groups, staged lecture-performances, and engaged in self-education through encounters with victims, perpetrators, and witnesses of the extreme terror, genocide, and ethnic cleansing. Its project Mathemes of Re-association, which commenced in 2008 focuses on the Srebrenica genocide. In the project Grupa Spomenik examine the conditions under which art can produce its own discourse on the genocide and the state of contemporary-permanent-war. The Living Death Camps project undertaken with Forensic Architecture is but one of many collaborations that Grupa Spomenik has undertaken and is based upon a unique methodology in which “the group” does not constitute any fixed identity or collective, but rather a platform in which every new transformation has the potential to gather and empower different participants and associates. From this platform emerged in 2010 the Working Group Four Faces of Omarska, which continues to investigate the complex vortex of historical dynamics based upon the four faces of the Omarska site in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Ayesha Hameed is an artist and writer who is Joint Programme Leader in Fine Art and History of Art in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths University of London, where she is also a researcher on the Forensic Architecture project. Hameed’s practice includes performance, video and text, and examines borders, migration, and detention. Her essays have been widely published in journals and edited collections such as Tate ETC (2010), Photoworks (2011), Place: Location and Belonging in New Media Contexts (2008), and The Sarai Reader (2013).
Samir Harb is an architect who has worked in the field of architecture and cultural landscape planning in the West Bank since 2006. His current project focuses on reconstructing meta-narration in complex spatial orders through architecture and the graphic novel.
Charles Heller is a filmmaker and researcher on the Forensic Architecture project whose practice has a long-standing focus on the politics of migration. His works include the documentary “NEM-NEE” (2005) on the condition of rejected asylum seekers in Switzerland, and “Crossroads at the Edge of Worlds” (2006) on Sub-Saharan transit migrants in Morocco, produced within the “Maghreb Connection” project (curated by Ursula Biemann). Between 2009 and 2011 he conducted the art and research project “Image/Migration” that critically examined the circulation of images of migration, from the field of human rights to that of the governance of migration. He is currently working towards a PhD in the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths University of London on the politics of mobility at the maritime frontiers of the European Union. He is one of the founders of the “WatchTheMed” project, a participatory online map for documenting deaths of migrants and violations of migrants’ rights at sea.
Helene Kazan is a multidisciplinary artist who uses research and archival material across her practice to generate moving image and multimedia installations. She has exhibited her work internationally. Most recently she participated in “Exposure” at Beirut Art Center, Lebanon, “It’s Always too Late, Archiving the Anthropocene” at The Showroom, London, and had a solo exhibition “A Domestic Image of Preemption” at Lubomirov Easton, London. She has presented her research at the IVSA 2013 Annual Conference on the Public Image, Goldsmiths University of London, and at the “Images of Terror, Narratives of (In)security” international conference at the University of Lisbon, Portugal (2013). Kazan completed her MA in the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths University of London in 2013.
Thomas Keenan teaches media theory and human rights at Bard College, where he directs the Human Rights Project and helped create the first undergraduate degree program in human rights in the United States. He is a research fellow on the Forensic Architecture project and co-author with Eyal Weizman of Mengele’s Skull: The Advent of a Forensic Aesthetics (Sternberg Press, 2012). He is author of Fables of Responsibility (Stanford UP, 1997), co-editor, with Wendy Chun, of New Media, Old Media (Routledge, 2006) and, with Tirdad Zolghadr, of The Human Snapshot (Luma/Sternberg Press/CCS, 2013). He curated “Antiphotojournalism” with Carles Guerra (Barcelona and Amsterdam, 2010–2011) and “Aid and Abet” (Quebec, 2011). He has served on the boards of a number of human rights organizations and journals, including WITNESS, Scholars at Risk, the Crimes of War Project, the Journal of Human Rights, and Humanity.
Steffen Kraemer works as an independent video editor, cinematographer, and producer on individual and collective audio-visual projects with an abiding interest in experimental documentary and the essay film that relate to architecture and contemporary media fields. He is a research assistant and lecturer in the Department of Applied Media Studies at the University of Cottbus (Brandenburg). Krämer received his Diploma in Communication in Social and Economic Contexts from The University of the Arts Berlin and his MA in Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University London.
Adrian Lahoud is an architect, teacher, and research fellow on the Forensic Architecture project. He joined the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths in 2011 as director of the MA Programme; prior to this he was director of postgraduate Urban Design at the University of Technology Sydney. Currently he is leading the M.Arch Urban Design at The Bartlett, University College London (UCL) and is an external thesis advisor at the Projective Cities M.Phil. Programme at the Architectural Association (London). He exhibits and lectures internationally, most recently at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Tate Britain, and Storefront for Art and Architecture (New York). He has been a guest critic at the Royal College of Art London, Columbia GSAPP, Angewandte Vienna, and Technische Universität (TU) Berlin. His doctoral research sets out a philosophical, scientific, and architectural history of scale as a problematic, drawing on case studies of post-war urban planning, territorial governance, and climate modeling.
Armin Linke works on a constantly expanding archive of human activity and the different forms of natural and manmade landscapes. He calls into question the boundaries between fiction and realities through the combined use of photography, film, and other visual media. His multimedia installations have been exhibited at the Venice Biennale and shown as part of the film program at the Architekturtage in Graz, Austria. He is a professor at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design, guest professor at the Università IUAV di Venezia, and research affiliate at the MIT Visual Arts Program in Cambridge, USA.
Modelling Kivalina is comprised of artists and architects based at the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London. The group consists of Andrea Bagnato, Helene Kazan, Daniel Fernández Pascual, Hannah Meszaros Martin, and Alon Schwabe. Modelling Kivalina was formed in 2012 when the group was invited by the Anchorage-based Re-Locate project to work in the Inupiaq village of Kivalina, Alaska. The research is funded in part by the World Justice Project, a Seattle-based organization that supports initiatives seeking to promote the rule of law. Modelling Kivalina aims to facilitate planning negotiations between residents and governmental agencies in Alaska through the use of visual techniques, in order to develop new ways of engaging with the issue of climate displacement worldwide.
Model Court is an ongoing collaboration between Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Sidsel Meineche Hansen, Lorenzo Pezzani, and Oliver Rees that explores the shifting infrastructures of international justice. Exhibitions and events include “Resolution 978 HD” at Gasworks, London (2013); “Model Court, The 21st Century” program at the Chisenhale Gallery, London (2011); “Model Court” at Henie Onstad Art Centre, Oslo; “Model Court” curated by Rio Bravo, “Osloo,” The Danish Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale (2011); and “Model Court: An Ecology of the Courtroom” at CCA, Glasgow (2009).
Gerald Nestler is an artist and researcher on the Forensic Architecture project who combines theory with performance, installation, video, and speech to interrogate financial derivatives and other finance-based narratives and their role in current biopolitics. Nestler lectures at Webster University Vienna and is completing a PhD in the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London. Recent projects include “The Trend Is Your Friend” (Kunsthaus Graz, 2009 with Sylvia Eckermann), “Declining Democracy: Rethinking democracy between utopia and participation” (CCC Strozzina, Florence, 2011), “On Purpose. The New Derivative Order” (Kunstraum Bernsteiner, Vienna, 2012), “Glitch” (Kunstraum Innsbruck, 2013), and “Carry Cargo Cult” (Kunsthalle Wien, 2013). Selected publications include Yx. fluid taxonomies—human derivatives—vibrations in hyperreal econociety (2007), Kunstforum International, issues 200 and 201 (co-editor with Dieter Buchhart, 2010), and What’s next. Art after the Crisis (2013).
Godofredo Pereira is an architect and writer based in Porto and London, and a researcher on the Forensic Architecture project. His research “Underground Fetishism” investigates political and territorial conflicts within the planetary race to the underground, with a particular focus on the parallel exhumations of political leaders and natural resources as re-imaginations of the body politic. Together with lawyer Alonso Barros he is coordinating the “Atacama Desert Project,” a geo-forensic analysis of environmental violence in the Atacama Desert in Chile, in support of claims brought against copper companies by local communities and NGOs. He is also the coordinator of History and Theory at the M.Arch Urban Design program at the Bartlett, University College London; co-founder and editor of Detritos, a journal of art and critical theory; and editor of the book Savage Objects (INCM, 2012). He frequently writes on architecture, urbanization, and territory. He graduated as an architect from FAUP (Porto), holds an M.Arch from the Bartlett School of Architecture and is a PhD candidate in the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London.
Nicola Perugini is an anthropologist and assistant professor at the Al Quds Bard Honors College (Jerusalem, Palestine), where he directs the Human Rights and International Law Program. His past work focused on land rights, customary law, and historical dynamics of the reproduction of power and traditional dependence relations in Morocco. His current research investigates the colonial uses of human rights discourses and practices in the context of Israel/Palestine. In 2012–2013 he was a Member at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, where he further developed his exploration of the relationship between human rights and domination, the subject of a forthcoming book with Oxford University Press. His publications also focus on embedded anthropology in Iraq and Afghanistan, asylum seekers in Italy, and spatial practices and control in Palestine. Since 2009, he has been collaborating on different research-theory-art projects with the Palestinian collective Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency (DAAR).
Alessandro Petti is an architect and researcher in urbanism based in Bethlehem, and is a research fellow on the Forensic Architecture project. He is the director of the program “Campus in Camps” at Al Quds University, an experimental educational program hosted in the Dheisheh refugee camp (Bethlehem) and director of the architectural studio and art residency DAAR (Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency), which combines discourse, spatial intervention, and collective learning. DAAR projects have been shown in various museums and biennales around the world. He has written on the emerging spatial order dictated by the paradigm of security and control (Arcipelaghi e enclave, Mondadori, 2007), and developed with DAAR a series of propositions for the subversion, reuse, profanation, and recycling of structures of domination and control (Architecture After Revolution, Sternberg Press, 2013).
Lorenzo Pezzani is an architect and researcher on the Forensic Architecture project whose work deals with the spatial politics and visual cultures of migration and human rights, with a particular focus on the liquid geographies of the ocean. Since 2011, his research has focused upon a critical analysis of the militarized border regime and the politics of migration in the Mediterranean Sea. In collaboration with a wide network of contributors, the research has produced materials that challenge the regime of visibility in this contested area and provides tools for use in the struggle for the rights of migrants and for freedom of movement. He teaches at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London (UCL) and at Goldsmiths. His writings have appeared in various journals and edited books. He is also a member of the Model Court group and a co-founder of the “WatchTheMed” project. He is a PhD candidate in the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London.
Susan Schuppli is an artist and writer as well as senior research fellow and project coordinator on the Forensic Architecture project. Prior to working at Goldsmiths she was associate professor at the University of Western Ontario, Canada. She received her doctorate in 2009 between the Centres for Cultural Studies and Research Architecture at Goldsmiths and participated in the Whitney Independent Study Program after completing her MFA at the University of California San Diego. Her creative projects have been exhibited throughout Canada, USA, Australia, Europe, and Asia. Forthcoming exhibitions include Casino Luxembourg and Stroom Den Haag. Her written work has appeared in Cabinet, Photoworks, Borderlands, Cosmos & History, Memory Studies, and publications by Academia Press, Imprensa Nacional, Ciel Variable, Sternberg Press, Yale University Press, and Cambridge Scholars Press. She is author of the forthcoming book, Material Witness: Forensic Media and the Production of Evidence (MIT Press, 2015), which is also the subject of an experimental documentary.
Francesco Sebregondi is an architect and research associate on the Forensic Architecture project. His research addresses the representation of spatially diffuse processes, the role of architecture as media, and the margins of contemporary cities. From 2011 to 2014 he was involved in the administration of the Forensic Architecture project and took an active part in several research investigations such as Living Death Camps, Drone Strikes, and White Phosphorus (which he coordinated). In 2013, he produced a series of maps and visuals of the world of international courts and tribunals on the basis of data provided by Cesare Romano and Karen Alter, published in The Oxford Handbook on International Adjudication (Oxford University Press, 2014). In 2011, he published the pamphlet The Event of Void: Architecture and Politics in the Evacuated Heygate Estate.
Shela Sheikh is a writer and editor, and research associate and publications coordinator on the Forensic Architecture project. She holds a PhD from the Department of History, Goldsmiths University of London. Her research resides at the interfaces between Continental Philosophy, Literature and the Visual Arts, focusing on theories of testimony, the documentary, performativity, theatricality, media, sovereignty, politics, and ethics. Her doctoral thesis, “‘I am the martyr (x)’: Philosophical Reflections of Testimony and Martyrdom,” offered a reading of the phenomenon of “martyr video-testimonies” of the Lebanon of the 1980s through the lens of the poetico-performatives of Jacques Derrida. She has published in edited collections and Third Text online. Since 2005 she has overseen publications at INIVA, The Hayward Gallery, and Antony Gormley Studio (all London). She lectures in the Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths.
Situ Research was founded in 2005 in Brooklyn, New York. It has developed a model of practice uniquely equipped to explore a wide range of spatial issues––from mapping and visualization to full scale architectural installations. SITU Research is also strongly committed to interdisciplinary collaborations. Work done with a wide range of practitioners in fields outside of design including lawyers, activists, geologists, paleontologists and artists has resulted in unanticipated but exciting applications of architectural tools and methodologies to projects that extend into territory far beyond the traditional boundaries of architectural practice. The Studio engages in this work not only to explore novel and nuanced spatial problems driven by an entirely different set of objectives, but more importantly to seek new territory for the designer’s role in politics, science, society, and the environment.
Caroline Sturdy Colls is Lecturer in Forensic Investigation and Research Lead at the Centre of Archaeology at Staffordshire University. She is also a research fellow on the Forensic Architecture project. Her research focuses on the application of interdisciplinary approaches to the investigation of Holocaust landscapes and the need for a sub-discipline of Holocaust archaeology. As part of this research she completed the first archaeological surveys of the former camps at Treblinka (Poland), the sites of the slave labor program in Alderney (the Channel Islands), and the former Semlin Judenlager and Anhaltelager (Belgrade, Serbia). Her research at Treblinka extermination camp has recently received international media attention following the broadcast of a Channel 5 television documentary, Treblinka: Inside Hitler’s Secret Death Camp, and a BBC Radio 4 documentary The Hidden Graves of the Holocaust. Caroline is also a practicing forensic archaeologist and is a full member of the UK Forensic Archaeology Expert Panel and Member of the Institute For Archaeologists.
Territorial Agency was established by John Palmesino and Ann-Sofi Rönnskog, both research fellows on the Forensic Architecture project. Territorial Agency is an independent organization that promotes and works for integrated sustainable territorial transformations, combining analysis, contemporary architecture and urbanism, advocacy, and action. Projects include the Anthropocene Observatory, Museum of Infrastructural Unconscious, North, Unfinishable Markermeer, Kiruna, and The Coast of Europe. They convene Diploma unit 4 at the Architectural Association in London, where they initiated the AA Think Tank on territorial transformations. Palmesino is researching for his PhD in the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, where he also teaches on the MA. He has been Research Advisor at the Jan van Eyck Academie (Maastricht), previously led the research activities of ETH Zurich/Studio Basel – Contemporary City Institute, and he is a founding member of Multiplicity. Rönnskog has been a researcher at ETH Zurich/Studio Basel – Contemporary City Institute. She is a research fellow at AHO Oslo School of Architecture.
Paulo Tavares is an architect and urbanist who graduated in Brazil and is currently based between Quito and London, where he is also a researcher on the Forensic Architecture project. Tavares teaches architecture at the Universidad Católica de Ecuador – Facultad de Arquitectura, Diseño y Arte, Quito, and has previously held teaching posts at the Centre for Research Architecture, and at the Visual Lab of the MA in Contemporary Art Theory, both at Goldsmiths University of London. His writings have appeared in many publications worldwide and his work has been exhibited in various venues including Centre for Contemporary Arts in Glasgow, Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, Portikus in Frankfurt, and the Taipei Biennial. He is developing a project on the politics of ecology in Amazonia within the context of the PhD Program in the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London.
Srdjan Jovanović Weiss is an architect living and working in New York and is as a research fellow on the Forensic Architecture project. He is the founding principal of NAO (Normal Architecture Office) and co-founder of School of Missing Studies. He is author of Socialist Architecture: The Vanishing Act (JRP|Ringier, 2012) with photographer Armin Linke, and Almost Architecture (Merz & Solitude, 2006). His designs include Villa 62 Ordos, China, curated by artist Ai Weiwei; Z-blocks, created for social interaction; and Hilltopia, a vision involving the creation of hills in Philadelphia to transform the vacant city into a common landscape. His curatorial projects include: “Lina Bo Bardi” at Columbia GSAPP, “Yona Friedman: About Cities” at The Drawing Center in New York, and “Anne Tyng: Inhabiting Geometry” at The Institute for Contemporary Art in Philadelphia and at The Graham Foundation in Chicago. He received a PhD from the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths University of London for research on the Architecture of Balkanization, and Masters degrees from Harvard GSD and the University of Belgrade. Jovanovic Weiss currently teaches at Columbia and Penn universities. He has worked with Herzog & de Meuron Architects, Richard Gluckman, and artists Jenny Holzer, Robert Wilson, and Marjetica Potrč.
Eyal Weizman is an architect, Professor of Spatial and Visual Cultures, and Director of the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths University of London. Since 2011 he has also been directing Forensic Architecture as its principal investigator. He is a founding member of the architectural collective DAAR (Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency), formed in 2007 in Beit Sahour, Palestine. His books include (with Thomas Keenan) Mengele’s Skull: The Advent of a Forensic Aesthetics (Sternberg Press, 2012), The Least of all Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence from Arendt to Gaza (Nottetempo 2009; Verso, 2011), Hollow Land (Verso, 2007), and A Civilian Occupation (Verso, 2003). He has worked with a variety of NGOs worldwide, and was a member of the B’Tselem board of directors. He studied architecture at the Architectural Association in London and completed his PhD at the London Consortium/Birkbeck College.
Ines Weizman is Junior Professor of Architectural Theory at the Bauhaus University Weimar and Senior Lecturer at London Metropolitan University. She was trained as an architect at the Bauhaus University Weimar, the Ecole d’Architecture de Belleville in Paris, Cambridge University, and the Architectural Association, where she completed her PhD thesis in History and Theory. In 2014 her edited book Architecture and the Paradox of Dissidence will be published with Routledge. Her articles have appeared in books, magazines, and journals including AA Files, Architecture & Culture (Bloomsbury, 2014), ADD METAPHYSICS, ARCH+, BEYOND, Displayer, Journal of Architectural Education (JAE), Perspecta, Volume, The Sage Handbook of Architectural Theory (Sage, 2012), StadtHeimaten (Jovis, 2012), Agency (Routledge, 2009), Urban Transformation (Ruby Press, 2008), and Dictionary of War (Merve Verlag, 2008). Her installation “Repeat Yourself: Loos, Law and the Culture of the Copy” was shown as part of the “Museum of Copying” (curated by FAT Architects) in the Arsenale at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2012 and in 2013 as solo shows in the Architecture Centre Vienna and the Buell Architecture Gallery at Columbia University, New York.