Semester project, Station+
118.Parasite explores illegal action as a catalyst for change through fiction.
Semester project for: Station+
In collaboration with: Nils Grootenzerink
After a series of occupations throughout the city, the top floor of the Kornhaus tower in Zurich is held hostage by a group of yet unidentified activists. A big banner is spotted waving in the wind above the opaque concrete structure. In their manifesto, the occupants demand access to the site, cultural recognition and a full stop to further demolitions.
The unlikely event and the spectacular police intervention capture the city's attention for months. National and international news outlets cover the story relentlessly until the polarized debate culminates in a public discussion, held at the local news station. Ultimately, the political and legislative momentum result in a second referendum.
After construction had started two years earlier, towards the end of 2027 the additions are finally completed: a terrace, overlooking the river and a public staircase, leading up to the top of the tall structure. Providing unprogrammed space, available for appropriation by the city’s population.
Zurich has one of the tightest real estate markets in the world.
Capital is dominating urban development.
And carefully created cultural sites are being displaced.
Again and again.
Replacing them with spaces for a privileged few and turning our city into an indifferent mass.
This is not sustainable; this is not socially inclusive.
There is not enough space for your exclusivity.
We demand the cultural wealth we create to get the recognition it deserves.
We demand the valuation of space over matter and of culture over capital.
We demand a full stop of the demolition of homes and of memories.
We demand the addition, not the replacement, of layers of action.
We demand coexistence.
And Lastly: while it initially promised to be of value to the public, it now looms inaccessibly over our city, casting a real shadow over our public spaces.
We demand the tower we are sitting on to hold the promises it made back in 2011.