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This project was part of the 11th edition of Bienal de Arquitetura de São Paulo. 


Commissioned by:

Het Nieuwe Instituut.

In collaboration with:

In collaboration with the Bienal de Arquitetura de São Paulo and the Dutch Consulate in São Paulo, The New Institute has organised a program with workshops, a seminar and an exhibition around the theme ‘occupancy/appropriation’. As part of this program, Office CCXD, Studio Knol, ZUS & GOAA were invited to create an “assembly” space within the squatted high-rise known as Ocupação 9 de Julho in São Paulo.

After a first meeting with the movement of former homeless people (MSTC)—now the inhabitants of the Ocupação 9th de Julho—it was clear that we needed to develop something that would live on and continue to grow, even when would leave some days later. Together with the students of Ecola da Cidade, we developed one single piece of furniture that could be combined and used as a seat, bench, altar, bar, shelves, table, flowerpot etc. The shape of the furniture was based on the logo of Sao Paulo, but—to make a statement against the Sao Paulo regime— it was split in half.


While producing these furniture’s, it turned out that we (unintentionally) developed a logo for the people of the Ocupação. Realising this, it seemed only natural to expand our intervention. Having access to professional climbing gear & support (Thanks to Studio Knol) we adapted the local tradition of Pixação—a native Brazilian form of graffiti— to apply the logo onto this extraordinary building. The yellow colour (road marking paint) was chosen to symbolise the migration from the street into the building.   


Eventually it all came together within the actual assembly space on the 3rd floor of the Ocupação. Using the same yellow road paint, we divided the space into three parts, as if making a transversal cut through a church. One side is defined as an informal “living room”, the other side is meant to be a more formal space for presentations and meetings. The middle part is freespace and can be appropriated accordingly. 

The flexible furnitures are unifying the space, creating not only a real “space of assembly”, but they also provide a structure for the occupants to build on. 

© Cédric Van Parys

Anchor 11
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