Yonathan Raz Portugali, Notes from the Municipal Archives
Project by Hadar Porat, Alexandra Topaz, Naomi Niddam, Sonja Dickow
In Portugali’s story, the narrator reads the building records of his childhood home, a large Arab house in Yafo. However, his research in the Municipality’s virtual archives reveals no trace of his existence, nor is the information he gains congruent with his personal memories of the events that took place in the building over many years.
Inspired by the story’s reflection about the relationship between online archival information and individual memory, our architectonic model translates the structure of memory with spatial means. In the maze-like building of open and overlapping spaces, one can choose many different paths among and across the different levels. The connected levels generate a notion of spatial emergence rather than a disconnection. Light falling through the openings in the building allows the person walking inside to experience the space as a whole.
The voids in the floor/ceiling draw attention to new creations allowed by absence. Looking down from different heights and angles, varying overlapping spaces create different shapes. The remarked presence of an individual point of view transforms the walker into a designer. Writing the history of a family house relies on the way of reading memories. The play between forgetfulness and remembrance appears in new stories of re-memory.