Forensic Architecture: evidence of violence and survival
Date: 15 May 2023
Venue: The Mosaic Rooms + Online
Address: 226 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SW
Tickets: Free – £5
Accessibility: wheelchair accessible for wheelchairs less than 80cm in width (Contact venue for further details)
This two-part event sets out to explore methods that can enable citizen-led forensic investigations. This talk and practical workshop, led by Omar Ferwati, Research Coordinator at Forensic Architecture, will set out to present the concepts and theory of forensic investigations.
With the proliferation of smartphones today, spaces of crisis are increasingly documented by civilian witnesses, revealing a media-dense landscape apt for fact-finding and evidence-gathering. Such forms of documentation along with witness testimonies lend themselves to being used in research and investigations into contemporary conflicts and life around them.
The first part is a talk that reviews several investigations by Forensic Architecture, a research agency that uses architectural and media analysis to investigate incidents of violence. Ferwati will also share how in his own work, he uses these methods to study how people used architecture to survive conflict in Syria through his concept of ‘civilian crisis architecture.’
This will be followed by a hands-on workshop offering an introduction to the research and investigative techniques and principles used by Forensic Architecture including open-source research, spatial analysis, geolocation, verification, and media analysis through a series of short tutorials and tasks.
Materials, and links for the workshop will be shared with participants one week before the event.
Please note for the in person workshop: This is a practical workshop in English and you will need to bring your laptop to take part in the activities.
Please note for the online workshop: This workshop will be live translated to Arabic. Online participation may be limited to questions being asked in the chat, and so may not have the same level of attentiveness as Omar Ferwati will be going round the room to answer questions.
This event is produced in partnership with The Mosaic Rooms and is supported using public funding by Arts Council England.
Omar Ferwati is the Research Coordinator at Forensic Architecture (FA), a research agency based at Goldsmiths, University of London which applies pioneering spatial analysis techniques for human rights investigations. His investigations have ranged from airstrikes to colonial violence, to environmental racism. He trained as an architect in Canada and has worked at several architecture practices. Omar’s own research currently focuses on how civilians use architecture to survive urban warfare and other crises. Omar previously taught at the University of Waterloo School of Architecture.