Exhibition in Munich on homelessness



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The exhibition titled "Who’s next? Homelessness, Architecture and the City" on at the TU München Architekturmuseum looks at the phenomenon of homelessness or the condition of not having a home. A global problem which, however, must be tackled at the local level.

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Exhibition in Munich on homelessness
The "Who’s next? Homelessness, Architecture and the City" exhibition on at the TU München Architekturmuseum (Technical University of Munich), located in the Pinakothek der Moderne modern art museum, puts the spotlight on a problem that is before all of us, but which we often turn a blind eye to as, at least on the surface, it seems to only concern a few marginalised communities. It is precisely for this reason that this exhibition is so important, while the title of "Who’s next?" leaves no doubts: being homeless is not something abstract, something that affects only others, but in truth it is a tangible situation that can affect anyone. Because it takes very little, an accident at work, a long illness or a separation for your life to be turned upside down – and with it your home – and to end up on the street.
A problem that has existed for many years, but has been made worse by the pandemic which has further aggravated an already fragile situation. Also because, as the curators explain, "in many countries around the world, in recent years, the official political discourse has been characterised by the attitude that poverty is a personal fault and that if people experience homelessness, it is because they have not tried hard enough to find shelter and a secure livelihood." The pandemic, with its aftermath of bankruptcies and growing unemployment, is making us understand that in reality nothing is as simple as it appears, encouraging us reflect in general on our attitude towards the homeless. To try to tackle the situation on January 21, 2021 the European Parliament ratified the resolution on access to decent and affordable housing for everyone, a human right envisioned by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and in particular by Articles 8 and 25.
The exhibition, which aims to do away with the stigmatisation linked to homeless people, looks at the ways in which the discipline of architecture, aware that it cannot solve the problem alone, can at least contribute to the overall scenario. Indeed, it a question of understanding how architecture can, in collaboration with other professions, contribute to providing permanent accommodation for homeless people. First of all, we need to take a close look at the actual circumstances of the homeless phenomenon. And to do this, it is necessary to draw on the expertise of national, regional and city authorities, non-governmental organisations, religious institutions, health facilities and academics from various disciplines.
To this end, the exhibition at the TUM architecture museum looks at historical and current developments in German cities, but also in other parts of the world, bringing in examples of cities such as Los Angeles, Moscow, Mumbai, New York, São Paulo, San Francisco, Shanghai and Tokyo. Analyses of architectural case studies, historical and commissioned documentaries and a library specifically set up for the exhibition contribute to an understanding of the homeless phenomenon and the problems associated with it. Through this open and inclusive approach, the exhibition allows us to confront and understand one of the most complex crises of our time. There are no straightforward standard solutions and it is not an easy task, but there are also some encouraging examples to draw inspiration from.
The exhibition, curated by Daniel Talesnik, is accompanied by a catalogue edited by Talesnik with Andres Lepik and enriched by a series of events that take a closer look at the theme and aim to deepen this important discussion.

Christiane Bürklein

Exhibition “Who’s next. Homelessness, Architecture and the City”
Curator: Daniel Talesnik
Assistants: Ella Neumaier, Ilyas Kerem Yilmaz, Ann-Kathrin Gügel, Theresa Thanner, Anna-Maria Mayerhofer
Graphic Designer: Kathryn Gillmore
Exhibition Architecture: Carmen Wolf
Location: Barer Straße 40, 80333 München
Date: November 4, 2021 – February 6, 2022
Images: see captions
Find out more: https://www.architekturmuseum.de/en/exhibitions/whos-next/