We are pleased to tell you that a community meeting was held by TandemWorks, our collaborator on the Urban Strategy Project for Beirut River. TandermWorks is an art organization that raises awareness on social and environmental issues through art in public places. The meeting was held on June 23rd in the community center Badguer in Bourj Hammoud and moderated by Vrouyr Joubanian from MENA Design Research Center.
The meeting was the first part of the three-fold project by TandemWorks, led by artist Vartan Avakian, to include the community in the process of thinking about the future of their neighbourhood, and to raise collective consciousness and promote civil responsibility on Beirut River. This exercise will be followed by a sound installation by the artist and a publication that will be distributed for free in Bourj Hammoud and Badawi tackling issues of public spaces in urban context, the importance of the river from a social and environmental level and will include contributions by Jessika Khazrik, Marwan Rechmaoui, Rayya Badran, Mounira Al-Solh, Sarah Lilly Yassine and others.
The invited stakeholders came from different backgrounds, ranging from the public and private sectors, civil society, academics, and residents. They all expressed their thoughts on their neighborhood, stories of their relationship with the river and their memories of its presence. Participants were asked to work on different exercises where they could:
1-Speak about their past and present experiences with the river;
2-Describe the current situation and analyze the factors and reasons leading to it;
3-Project possible Utopian (as well as Dystopian) visions of the river.
In case you are interested in this project, please do not hesitate in contacting us!
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