Mining Istanbul: A project for an urban refinery
Like an archaeologist, I have read the city as a palimpsest of permanences and uprootedness. By tracing material cycles and paths, from extraction to consumption, I have questioned the limitations of this linear system of territorial and material exploitation. Istanbul contains many material and immaterial resources that can be harvested, made accessible and re-used, as an alternative to the ruthless exhaustion and entropy of new ones and new territory.
The project questions the fundamental schism and decentralisation of the city’s own metabolic organs. By their re-centralisation, it also takes on the role of reclaiming and recuperating ruinous parts of the city, in this case an old ottoman barrack.
As an urban infrastructure part of a network, the project is a node where electronic waste is refined into raw materials. The refinery arranges an underground access to smooth logistics, whilst framing a dialectical urban ground for the neighbourhood. It incorporates repair-workshops for new types of craftsmanship. Structure and ornament are unified by a specific casting construction process, exploring the plasticity of self standing walls.