For the installation "Homeplace", Matri-Archi(tecture) re-imagines and re-configures the Rotunda as a site for critical reflections on the spatiality of dwelling, sharing with–and inviting–visitors to consider what forms and imaginings a home might invoke and hold. In coming together, Matri-Archi(tecture) interrogates the plurality of a homeplace, not fixed in scale, duration or state. Through assemblages of textile, sound and storytelling–mythical, speculative and performative–the installation explores commonalities and possible forms of place-making by centering the homeplace as a place that is both affective and intimate, revealing the dimensions of personal, interpersonal and embodied experiences of belonging.
The exhibition materializes in three parts. A beaded curtain extends from the ground floor to the dome of the Rotunda, creating a space of transparency and intimacy. The atmospheric space is complemented by a soundscape based on a series of voices from the diaspora, exploring ideas of dwelling. Matri-Archi(tecture) opens and extends "Homeplace" with an imbizo (Zulu: gathering) that activates the installation during the vernissage into the exhibition.
With "Homeplace", Matri-Archi(tecture) invites visitors to take part in a discourse on imaginings of home otherwise. As diasporic women mediating, bridging and blurring boundaries across Northern and Southern hemispheres, the exhibition honors and references African and diasporic rituals, expressions and forms of constructing homeplace, that is at once reflected in the installation and experience of it.
Matri-Archi(tecture) is an association that hosts a network of intersectional spatial practitioners dedicated to the development of African spatial education, offering a site for artistic collaboration through design, art and architectural research projects. As a constellation of pluri-disciplinary spatial practitioners, Matri-Archi(tecture) recognizes the value of collaboration across multiple worlds and worldviews, collaborating across various African and European cities.
They exhibited at the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein (2021), the Chicago Architecture Biennale (2021), and the Nairobi Design Week (2019), among others. They won the "Best New Practices" award (2021) from the architecture platform Archdaily and were featured in the architecture magazine Arch+ for contemporary outstanding feminist spatial practice (2022). They are exhibiting at "Building Africa: The State of Things!" at Keyes Art Mile in August 2023 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
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