OH MY HOME – LOST AND FOUND
2015 – 2017
Public space installation and performance by the artists Saadia Hussain, Lalya Gaye & Ixome Ormaetxe
OH MY HOME – LOST AND FOUND is a multi-disciplinary project seeking to explore, reflect on and re-define the meaning of the word ‘home’, beyond its traditionally place-based and physical definition, in the strict sense of a house and its four walls. We aim to dig into a deeper sense of belonging that encompasses identity, language, culture, family, and homeland, that transcends the individual, and that relates to the on-going fears, hopes, and changes happening in communities across Europe. Home as an experienced, contested and negotiated space.
OH MY HOME – LOST AND FOUND has been installed and shown in 5 different cities in Europe: Haninge, Kosovo, Belfast, Blyth, San Sebastian and Gdansk since 2015.
The main objective and the methodology of our project has been that we seek to:
- a) Reclaim the public space as a home for all, from a geographical, political and philosophical perspective.
- b) Highlight the uses of the public space by those that “occupy” it because of a series of personal circumstances, traditional conventions or political negotiations.
- c) Through this, question our own ways, uses, actions and positions in those spaces (either public or private) and how we fight to seek them, create them, claim them, keep them, share them and survive in them.
Our approach to this is has been through our interventions that created an alternate experience of this space: This intervention will has been a public space installation hosting a series of events and physical interactions. We invited local people communities and by-passers– to engage physically and experientially with the work.
Our projects relies on the following core concepts:
- Project the phenomenological and personal experience of “home” onto a public space.
- Involve local communities with a special / interesting / unusual relation to the notion of home and highlight it to the general public.
- Create an experience, reflection and opportunity for dialogue about home as a contested yet shared, private yet universal space: whose home? what home? how do you make home? how does each of us interpret and live this notion, how to we negotiate it?
- Explore the following questions:
– What is home and what isn’t?
– What are the boundaries, transitions, processes and conflicts that
make home “home”, from the scale of the house, the town, and the nation?
– Is home a place? A feeling? Certain people?
- Focus on the interfaces and transitions between alien and home.
- Home as a contested, central to many tensions and community-bonding across Europe.What makes this street feel as my home but not the next one? Why is this place my home and not yours? Who owns the ‘home’?
- Related to Corners goals and criterias.
BACKGROUND AND RELATION TO THE CORNERS PROJECT
The project is part of Corners project funded by EU. The idea emerged from the visit to a shelter for refugees in San Sebastian during the Basque expedition in October 2013, and was further fleshed out during the Northern Ireland and Puglia expeditions. As a result of these visits, many questions related to the sense of belonging to a home, a family, a land or to a country started to arise in the group. Mainly, the sense that acquires the word “home” and the infinity of its meanings. How to construct a home for the one that doesn’t ́t have any, how to feel at home thousands of kilometers away from the family, what is really a home: a space or a feeling, etc.
Therefore, from a particular experience that opened our eyes to new realities and ways of dealing and constructing “home”, we believe that we necessarily need to approach such a universal topic that concerns to all the human beings, as the need to identify, grow, feel secure and integrated, be part and feel participant, share and give life to a common space: HOME (understood as Europe, the World, the Universe…) and practicing it in the public space to share it with everyone from a participatory and conciliatory perspective.
As artists, our intention has been to underline the plurality of the ways of living and creating home that exist nowadays, from our personal experience through the experience of “the others”, creating in a multidisciplinary way, a further-reading of the space and its reconstruction within new parameters that make public/participants wonder about its sense.
As individuals, each of the ideologists of the project identifies closely with the concepts mentioned before, from our own multiculturalism and diversity, enriching the project through different points of view and the synergies that have come during the process.