Deptford, Lewisham, London Borough of Lewisham, Greater London, England, SE10 8ND, United Kingdom
Interculturality, Equitable spaces and the bane of invisibility
Are borders invisible?
What is a border? In the social realm, borders are subjective. ‘These invisible borders’ do not lie in the dimension that is easily visible to all. Understanding the city as a complex matrix, an interplay of many attributes to look beyond the morphology to understand the needs of the people inhabiting it.
The design studio Euro Mediterranean Urban Voids Ecology aims to revitalise cities by identifying opportunities in social design that aims to foster intercultural interaction.
World economies such as London, home to a multicultural diverse ethnic population, is an ideal research ground for such interactions. The conflicting notions of maintaining and preserving a strong sense of personal identity yet remaining respectful of others is a challenge in today’s times. A better understanding and intervention in intercultural interactions in the urban and architectural realm are essential to rectify ‘othering’ and ‘xenophobia’. Meeting in the middle, metaphorically and literally in essence is the spirit of interculturality. Traversing through the realm of the metaphysical discourse of interculturality, this project intends to investigate borders to form bridges.
‘Intersectionality’ is a prism that seeks to understand how different social factors intersect with each other and reinforce power for some and barriers for others, where conflicts can be regarded as a bonding mechanism that allows people to adapt and shift viewpoints in order to achieve mutual goals. The findings of this investigation are then translated into an intercultural node that functions as a multi-scalar operation that identifies problems, solves them, and promotes interculturality at the urban, neighbourhood, and architectural scales. This design is rooted in feminist perspectives of equality and is understood via the theory of third spaces.
Hi, I am Aishwarya Pillai, a registered architect with the Council of Architecture in India. My professional journey in the architecture sector has taken me through a wide range of projects, encompassing residential design, commercial spaces, community-centric initiatives, and exhibition design. During my tenure at the WSA, I honed my skills in various areas of interest, delving into advanced Post Occupancy Evaluation of Buildings, Advanced Passive Architectural Design, Social Design, and academic writing. Naturally curious and driven by a profound passion for design research, I continue to explore and innovate in the field.