Architecture of Appropiation

The exhibition Architecture of Appropriation is the first step in a research project around squatting and architecture, focussing on subjects including vacancy, property and diverse forms of living.

Architecture of Appropriation examines how squatters use radical improvisation techniques to appropriate the city and influence thinking on contemporary urbanism. Available spaces, which have usually fallen vacant as a result of speculation or neglect, are taken back into use. This does more than just transform the re-occupied building from the inside out; new forms of use, management and accessibility give it a new purpose in the neighbourhood. The squatting movement has developed tactics that renew the city from the inside out.

Even though squatting has been illegal in the Netherlands since 2010, it still takes place on a limited scale. Through exploring such themes as vacancy, ownership and collective housing, Architecture of Appropriation shows how the infrastructure of a city can be adapted, how networks can be reconfigured, and how buildings can be reinvented. A new programme can be written for just about any situation, so that the potential of the existing city may be fully realised.