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ASSEMBLY FOR DISASSEMBLY

USING TEMPORARY FABRICATION

FOR LAND POLITICS IN TH NEGEV 

2019 | Negev Desert, Israel

Team Nof Nathansohn, Molly Mason, David White, Hugh Ebdy, Yaara Yacoby, Hila Sharabi

More information about this project can be found in the Impact and Collective Empathy issue of the International Journal of Architectural Computing (2020).

The Disassembly Home was a six week research project conducted in the Negev desert with Bedouin communities. There are 46 Bedouin villages in the Negev that are home to 108,000 people.  Although it is customary to think that the Bedouin are nomadic, many of the Bedouin in the Negev have settled there since the Ottoman Empire, much before the state of Israel was established in 1948. Despite this 34 out of 46 of the villages are unrecognized by the state of Israel. While they organize and battle in court for ownership of their ancestral land, they are denied access to State infrastructure such as water, power, sewage, and roads. The State routinely demolishes villages for building without a permit but has only issued 120 permits (with 111 in one village). We met with the communities of 4 unrecognized villages as well as with building planners like BIMKOM and civil rights organizations like the Negev Coexistance Forum to learn more about the unique building situation in the Negev. The architectural needs of the Bedouin are building shelters, homes, schools, and communities in environments where the risk of demolisition is a constant threat. One village, Al-Araqib, has been demolished 146 times since 2013. Working with Al-Araqib, we examined how digital technologies could be used to construct buildings that address their specific situation. While building the project, we examined workflows for how we could use this technology to adapt to other communities specific needs. The Disassembly Home became a prototype for a mobile fabrication infrastructure which we are currently acquiring more funding to research and create.
 

BEDOUIN IN THE NEGEV

There are 46 Bedouin villages in the Negev that are home to 108,000 people.  Although it is customary to think that the Bedouin are nomadic, many of the Bedouin in the Negev have settled there since the Ottoman Empire, much before the state of Israel was established in 1948. Despite this 34 out of 46 of the villages are unrecognized by the state of Israel. While they organize and battle in court for ownership of their ancestral land, they are denied access to State infrastructure such as water, power, sewage, and roads. The State routinely demolishes villages for building without a permit but has only issued 120 permits (with 111 in one village).

The architectural needs of the Bedouin are building shelters, homes, schools, and communities in environments where the risk of demolisition is a constant threat. We met with the communities of 4 unrecognized villages as well as with building planners like BIMKOM and civil rights organizations like the Negev Coexistance Forum to learn more about the unique building situation in the Negev. 

Because they are denied access to State infrastructures, the Bedouin villages have constructed their own forms of sustainable power and water and have developed infrastructures like mobile libraries to escape the constant threat of destruction. Inspired by their creativity and resiliance, we wondered if digital fabrication could also become such a distributed technology. We strategized how we could build a fabrication shop when every building is under risk of demolition. Following the model of Tel Arad’s mobile library project, we speculated how we could transport fabrication from village to village in a van. This was largely appealing because each village possessed their own construction needs and reprogrammable tools like CNC machines would be able to adapt to local needs. 

We decided to test how such a system would work with the village of Al-Araqib. Al-Araqib has been demolished 146 times since 2013. They rebuild every 3 weeks to maintain to legal claim to the land but only have a 10 minute notice when the State bulldozers come to destroy their homes. Working with the village of Al-Araqib, we aimed to design a structure that could fold and be discreetly stored within 10 minutes using local materials and digital technologies.
 

TRANSFORMABLE SYSTEMS

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MOBILITY

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MOLLY MASON

All rights reserved, 2020.