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Living Together

Tatiana Bilbao

In 1989, Martha Rosler erected a Spectacolor screen with the words “Housing is a Human Right” blinking in orange in Times Square. The sign was part of a Public Art Fund series, Messages to the Public, which also included Anne Turyn’s message, “What if everyone had a home”. In that same year, Internationale Bauausstellung (IBA) Emscher Park was held in the Ruhr region of Germany, a program that explored and showcased revitalization and development strategies for the region’s changing post-industrial landscape. It included an investigation of architectural and urbanistic ideas for new forms of housing. A conference on the pressing issue of housing was not unusual for the IBA, then at its third edition - the first two being in 1957 and 1979 - since it had always addressed a range of different political, economic and social...

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