Migrant workers building branches of the Guggenheim Museum, the Louvre and the Zayed National Museum on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi continue to face crushing debt, substandard wages and harsh working conditions despite recent efforts to improve treatment, according to a report published this week by Gulf Labor, a coalition of artists and activists.
[...] the researchers found that “underpayment is far and away the primary concern” for the workers themselves. — theartnewspaper.com
This issue of labor rights in the greater gulf region previously on Archinect:An updated look at the conditions for Abu Dhabi's migrant workersBBC journalists arrested for reporting on Qatar's World Cup laborersLabor violations affirmed in latest report of NYU Abu Dhabi constructionWorld Cup...
With all the cultural, sports and real-estate projects launched throughout the United Arab Emirates, there have been persistent protests about the working and living conditions [...] ”Serious concerns about workers’ rights have not been resolved”, claims the advocacy group, asking for a commitment for ”more serious protection” from these institutions and Saadiyat Island’s developers. [...] appears to have made a serious effort to address the concern expressed by Western museums and architects. — theartnewspaper.com
Qatari authorities have confirmed they are holding two British researchers who are investigating the 2022 World Cup facilities, which is linked with a scandal over poor working conditions and dozens of deaths of foreign workers.
"All of the actions that have been taken against the two Britons are consistent with principles of human rights enshrined in the constitution," read the statement released by the Qatari QNA news agency on Sunday. — RT
Baku is gaining international recognition as a centre of cutting-edge architectural design thanks in part to a major award given recently to London-based architect Zaha Hadid for her Heydar Aliyev Centre. The Azerbaijani capital’s new look has plenty of local fans, but also some detractors. [...]
The latest wave of protests occurred in February and March, prompted by a government announcement that 40,000 downtown residents would be evicted to make way for a “green zone” [...]. — theguardian.com
Human Rights Watch said that, along with the Crystal Hall, stage of the 2012 Eurovision song contest, and the park-cum-shopping mall of the Winter Garden, the centre is one of the city's many oil-fuelled grand projects that have seen local people evicted by force. — theguardian.com
From earlier today: Zaha Hadid wins the Design Museum’s Designs of the Year Award 2014While almost 250 homes were cleared to make way for Hadid's building, (questions have also been raised about the rights of those who built it. In 2010, while the project was under construction, the global...
"It’s an attempt to really use architecture intelligence and design intelligence to unpack violations of international law," Weizman says of Forensic Architecture. Along with SITU Research, he and his team have developed a technique called video-to-space analysis to harvest spatial data from cell phone videos and photos, analyzing footage, sometimes from multiple sources, to model and recreate chaotic events to better understand what happened on the ground. — fastcodesign.com
"Ai Weiwei, who helped design the Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing, stayed away from the opening ceremonies because he said he wanted his building to represent freedom, not be a trophy for an autocratic regime uninterested in change." — hyperallergic.com
Are we even delineating the role of the Architect in the construction process? Especially in the case where the clients are a monarchy and the problem cited is endemic to the entire region and not limited to the construction industry?Quoting Ai Weiwei and not Herzog and de Meuron seems almost...
A hunger strike in California state prisons calls for an end to indefinite solitary confinement in Security Housing Units, known as SHUs. Raphael Sperry has challenged fellow architects to ban the design of SHUs. Beverly Prior responds, reflecting on a career designing for incarceration. Joe Day sees societal values mirrored in the growth of both American prisons and museums. — kcrw.com
It might not seem like an architect’s area of expertise to reform inhumane prison conditions. But like attorneys, journalists and doctors, architects have a code of professional ethics. They’re required to “uphold human rights in all of their professional endeavors.”
Architect Raphael Sperry says that prisons designed for prolonged solitary confinement violate the human rights of the inmates, and that he and other architects are ethically bound to do something about it. — thestory.org
Daniel Libeskind, who has built a reputation working on historically and culturally sensitive projects such as the Jewish Museum in Berlin and the reconstruction of New York’s World Trade Center site, said beautiful architecture was no excuse for working with “morally questionable” clients.
“Even if they produce gleaming towers, if they are morally questionable, I’m not interested,” he said in the interview with The Architects’ Journal. — independent.co.uk
The project received approval from the Architectural Board of Review (ABR) last year, but this week, with the plan returning for final sign-off on some late-hour landscaping tweaks, the board majority, for what appeared to be political reasons stemming from the gay-marriage flap, opted to abstain from voting on Monday. — independent.com
As you're probably aware, Ai Weiwei, Chinese artist and human rights freedom fighter, is still being detained by Chinese police. In an effort to increase public awareness we're working with BIG to offer these t-shirts designed by e-types, at cost. Now available: Click here to buy  ...
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