Let’s reduce (english summary)
Salon Suisse 2016: Friday 25th November
A Mass of Society
Ellen Baxter, referring to 124 living social housing, kindergartens and an art museum, says that they preferred to pack all in a single building – a citadel named Sugar Hill. For 40 years, this thoughtful woman has worked with underprivileged people in New York City. She knows where to find the money. Half of flats are built for homeless people. More than 60,000 homeless are living in this city.
Children Will Make the Difference
Sugar Hill is not simply a social housing project, but a model. Children who are living in the building can visit a day school. There, they can listen to storytellers, see installations, assist with performances and much more. Children are taking part in decisions in choosing an “artist in residence” once a year. Residents take care of the day school, museum and art gallery, as well as organise a weekly market. The Italian municipality of Reggio nell’Emilia inspired this model.
A Urban Figure for the Homeless
What is the link with architecture? A close connection. Glen De Roche, who represents David Adjaye, explains. The built construction itself inspires children. The high, light-filled spaces connect from the inside the different installations and allow fortuitous meetings. This memorable black urban figure is integrated in its environment. The far Manhattan figure belongs to the rich, and poor people must satisfy themselves with buildings in red brick and social housing. From now on, there is also a urban figure for them.
Who Was Salvador Dali?
For the project’s competition, Ellen Baxter requested support from the architecture universities in New York. All advised her to choose and build David Adjye’s project. The building attracts now a lot of visitors who come from all over the world to learn how Sugar Hill works. Thanks to its architecture, this project attracts more and more people. Everyone is really surprised when a young three-year-old child explains who Salvador Dali was.
David Adjaye, UK: architect. Adjaye was born in Tanzania and travelled in Africa and the Middle East during his youth before settling in London. He graduated in Architecture from the Royal College of Art (1993), set up his first office in 1994 with William Russel before reforming it as Adjaye Associates in 2000. Adjaye Associates now has four international offices conducting projects throughout the world. His most prestig- ious commission to date is the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. He is concerned with the social responsibility of Architecture, especially visible in the Sugar Hill Project in Harlem, a new typology for affordable housing.
Ellen Baxter, USA: founder of Broadway Housing Communities (BHC). Ellen Baxter has been committed to fighting poverty and homelessness in New York City and nationally for more than 30 years, and is a pioneer of the supportive housing model now in wide use around the country and globally. In 1983, Baxter founded the nonprofit community-based organization Broadway Housing Communities (BHC) which today leverages the synergies of housing, education and the arts to create meaningful change for under served children, families and single adults in New York City neighborhoods beset by poverty. BHC’s most recent initiative, the visionary Sugar Hill Project, is poised to serve as a model for policymakers, funders and other developers committed to addressing the urban housing crisis and breaking the cycle of generational poverty.
Editing: Axel Simon (Hochparterre)
Producing: Roderick Hönig (Hochparterre), Urs Honegger (Hochparterre)
Copyright: Pro Helvetia & Hochparterre 2016
Hochparterre dokumentiert den «Salon Suisse» 2016. Als offizieller Medienpartner begleiten wir die Veranstaltungsreihe mit Hintergrundinformationen, Zusammenfassungen, Audiostatements, Bildern und Livestreamings. Der «Salon Suisse» ist das Begleitprogramm des Schweizer Auftritts an der 15. Internationalen Architekturbiennale – La Biennale di Venezia. Der «Salon Suisse» ist eine Initiative der Schweizer Kulturstiftung Pro Helvetia.
Hochparterre documente en exclusivité le «Salon Suisse» 2016. Le partenaire média officiel du salon suit la série d’événements au travers d’articles de fond, de résumés, d’enregistrements audios, d’images et de retransmissions en direct. Le «Salon Suisse» est le programme parallèle de la présence suisse à la 15e Biennale internationale d’architecture – La Biennale di Venezia. Le «Salon Suisse» est une initiative de la Fondation suisse pour la culture Pro Helvetia.
Hochparterre exclusively documents the «Salon Suisse» 2016. As official media partner Hochparterre provides multimedia background information with written articles, audiostatements, visuals and free live streaming of part of the «Salon Suisse» talks. «Salon Suisse» is a talks and event programme complementing Switzerland’s national participation at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia. It is initiated by the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia.