House of the Pink Spot / Frankie Pappas International
Reclaim space. reclaim safety. reclaim rights
The Site – ” A recognized gender-based violence (GBV) hotspot in orange farm’s drieziek 5. The identified corner sits on an empty plot of land that had become a dumping spot for garbage. At night it was a dark place with no working street lights and minimal human activity. All of this played a part in increasing chances of violent- and criminal behavior.” – Amnesty International South Africa.
The Brief – To reclaim the space, produce a landmark where community members can sit and find shade and light, where conversations can be had where small theatre productions can be held, where children can play, and where grandparents can watch.
” Create signage that offers human rights education – on the root causes of gender-based violence and gender equality. A QR code that leads residents to a hub of resources finding legal and counseling services for victims and survivors of GBV.” – Amnesty International South Africa.
The Idea – “ Shine a light on the high levels of violence against women in Orange Farm. Disrupt the GBV hotspot and transform it into a safe space, where residents can come together to host dialogues on solutions to address the high levels of violence against women in the area.” – Amnesty International South Africa.
Materials – The material palette was kept local to Orange Farm – and purchased from the local hardware. Bagged brick for the seating, telephone poles for the structure, shutter ply for signage bards, and buckets upon buckets of pink paint. All signage was designed and hand-painted by the community members.
Program – This small structure is designed to offer the community: a landmark, a meeting spot, a study space, a play park, an informal theatre, and a dance hall the magic of the pink spot lies in the genius of its inhabitants.
Solutions – Architectural solutions to safety in public areas such as this corner are not architectural they are human; they are community. It is the architect’s role to help catalyze the community into occupying and cherishing the space. In the case of the pink spot, the architectural stimulants are height, color, light, wifi, seating, and shade. But this is ultimately a building commissioned by the community, designed with the community, and built by the community.
Clients – ” The clients are young activists from Orange Farm. Part of amnesty international South Africa’s digital disruptors project, the majority of the disruptors have experienced and/or witnessed the pain that comes with abuse. The activists requested community consultations to ensure the structure had the buy-in of residents.” – Amnesty International South Africa.
How is the Building Unique? ” The pink spot is a unique response to transforming a recognized GBV hotspot in Orange Farm into a safe place. Its bright pink aesthetic offers a place of hope in what was previously a place of crime and violence. Residents were invited to volunteer on the construction of the installation to ensure it was community-led. The insanely fast two-week construction time demonstrated that change is possible when people unite on a similar goal.” – Amnesty International South Africa.
Sustainability – There can be no form of sustainable world without women.
” Each time a woman stands up for herself without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” – Amnesty International South Africa.