The inertia of politics and governance in a time when major societal changes occur at an increasingly faster pace and the dissatisfaction with the decision process makes room for bottom-up actions, activism and bold endeavours. In the light of so many examples of social activism, do architects have the tools to make their own stand? Does architecture have the power to disrupt the status quo?
Social Activism: The Latest Architecture and News
Last month, ArchDaily had an opportunity to speak with Akshat Nauriyal, Content Director at Delhi-based non-profit St+Art India Foundation which aims to do exactly what its name suggests—to embed art in streets. The organization’s recent work in the Indian metropolises of Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Bengaluru, has resulted in a popular reclamation of the cities’ civic spaces and a simultaneous transformation of their urban fabric. Primarily working within residential neighborhoods—they are touted with the creation of the country’s first public art district in Lodhi Colony, Delhi—the foundation has also collaborated with metro-rail corporations to enliven transit-spaces. While St+Art India’s experiments are evidently rooted in social activism and urban design, they mark a significant moment in the historic timeline of the application of street art in cities: the initiative involves what it believes to be a first-of-its-kind engagement between street artists and the government.