Contextual Surface at UTS

Gerard Reinmuth and Tamara Donnellan are running a Masters Studio at the University of Technology, Sydney from July-November, 2010.

The subject for the studio is Villawood Detention Centre - the first point of contact for many asylum seekers with Australia and Australians.  Current plans to increase capacity at the centre are used as a springboard for this project, which suggests that the current security paradigm - detention cells surrounded by a clear perimeter and chain wire - could be challenged.  We propose that the new project should contain all program in the 1.7km long boundary of the centre, forcing students to address a range of issues relating to Australia's irrational and disproportionate fear of asylum seekers.

The project arises from the writing and work TERROIR has done with the concept of the "contextual surface"

"The tool we use in order to generate this internal consistency for each project is what we call the contextual surface.  In TERROIR, this is often referred to as a machine (in Deleuze’s terms, an abstract machine) which is constructed anew for each project and which provides a mechanism for making the various prioritizations and negotiations particular to it and where the project itself is understood as a constellation of coincident interests (developer, end user, public).  Each new project results in a contextual surface unique to it, such that attempts to discern enduring ethical foundations across projects are thwarted by the very fact that each project challenges our own positions and to some extent re-forges how we see the world." 

To view the full studii brief, click here