The exhibition Shelter Fallout revolves around the project by Swiss designer Iskander Guetta Abri+ (Shelter+), which he created in 2018 as his master’s thesis in Industrial Design at ECAL, the Lausanne University of Art and Design in Switzerland. Abri+ responds to the need for privacy and human dignity in the often challenging and crammed living conditions in shelters hosting migrants, asylum seekers, and homeless people.
Abri+ is a set of objects – a curtain, hanging pockets, hooks, and a portable lamp – that each shelter resident would receive in an effort to provide a sense of hospitality and protect the privacy and dignity of displaced people. The objects are designed to fit the bunkbeds found in the underground fallout shelters in Switzerland that have been used to house asylum seekers and the homeless. Acknowledging that his design does not solve the problem itself, Guetta’s intention was to at least give a shred of hospitality, privacy and dignity to those housed in these tight subterranean spaces.
Developed by Iskander Guetta in collaboration with the Swiss design research practice common-interest, the exhibition Shelter Fallout consists of a spatial installation that integrates the Abri+ items, providing visitors with a sense of what life might be like living in a crammed space with hardly any privacy. A conversation curated by common-interest in conjunction with the exhibition at WantedDesign will critically examine how design can react to issues pertaining to the needs of displaced and marginalized people.
Iskander Guetta and common-interest co-founders Corinne Gisel and Nina Paim are currently nominated for the 2019 Swiss Federal Design Awards for their projects Abri + (Guetta) and Department of Non-Binaries, an exhibition about hybrid design practices and identities by common-interest.
Shelter Fallout is presented by swissnex Boston, the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Federal Office of Culture – Switzerland.
Spatial installation: Iskander Guetta in collaboration with common-interest (Nina Paim & Corinne Gisel), 2019
Abri+ objects: ECAL/Iskander Guetta, 2018
Event curation: common-interest (Nina Paim & Corinne Gisel), 2019
Supported by: swissnex Boston, the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Federal Office of Culture – Switzerland.