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Siân Wells — Feminist City

 

Graduation year — 2022

Email — sian.wells@the-LSA.org

Instagram — @sianwellss

Phone number — 07984594380

Tutors — Ruth Lang & Tumpa Fellows

Location — Bethnal Green Gas Holders, London Borough of Tower Hamlets

Size — 3,400sqm

 

Objective

To create a feminist Neighbourhood in Tower Hamlets that communalises the act of domestic work in the home; freeing up women to gain skills and employment through the craft of weaving.

 

Motivation

In the Bethnal Green North Ward 58% of children are currently living in poverty. The cause of this often comes down to long term worklessness or lack of parental skills. Within the patriarchal capitalist society we find ourselves in today, we understand that we rely on the act of unpaid domestic labour, most of which is carried out by women, further restricting them out of employment.

 

Strategy

The project suggests that any existing housing blocks on site are to be augmented to represent a new feminist housing typology, each fed by a local domestic common space. The old gas holder site will include a community cafe and dining hall, children zones with a central dyeing and weaving studio. The external timber structure erects itself from the building, displaying the drying yarn or an exhibition, taking up space unapologetically. The landscaping encapsulates the retained gas holder structure, creating a meeting point, community gardens, green walkways and large exhibition spaces to celebrate the craft.

 

Impact

By leading women into employment means the average household income will increase and the rate of child poverty will decrease. Therefore this feminist programme will not just be removing barriers and providing opportunities for women; but will have a ripple effect on the whole neighbourhood.