Studio L A and visual artist Robert Glas investigated the residential quality of temporary refugee housing complex ‘ Bijlmerbajes’, a former prison that since its closure in June 2016 is being used to house 600 refugees, among them 100 children.
In the nineties, the prison -that was initially designed to accommodate a liberal, relatively open prison regime- was strengthened with walls, fences, and bars blocking the windows. These bars also block the newcomers’ view to the city: every time the residents look outside, they are reminded that they actually live in a prison.
Starting by asking the simple question of why these bars can’t just be removed, Mackic, Beijaert and Glas investigated the tension between temporary use and the neglection of the effect of architecture, resulting in a short movie.
The movie led to seven chamber questions from the PVDA, GroenLinks and D66, unfortunately the VVD replied with the argument that the bars would function as bars, so they will not remove them.