It’s a general perception that design is all about prettification, but young designers are turning the frivolities on its head, and proving that ‘design’ is much more than that; it’s a superpower, and with it you can change the world.
The young designers are rethinking of business as usual, and putting these design ideas in perspective can be usefully disruptive for shopping centres as well.
In this feature we put an innovative project under the spotlight, this project is meant to provide a sense of permanency in a temporary environment of refugee settlements by simultaneously addressing requirements for privacy and fostering community engagement. Designed, conceptualised and ideated by young and dynamic, Sanjana Paramhans, who has done her BFA in Interior Designing from Pratt Institute, USA.
Talking about her take on designing and her thesis project, which is noble and pragmatic at the same time, Sanjana Paramhans says, “For my thesis, I tried to pick up on the ongoing issue of refugee resettlement. I decided to make a sanctuary for those who are temporarily displaced. An emergency shelter, to settle in before the legalities take place. Although intended to last a few days, sometimes these processes take upto months, leaving the refugees in extremely temporary dwellings.”
She further adds, “While thinking of the concept I tried to keep in mind what would be most important for the refugees, which would be the sense of permanency in a temporary situation. I also thought it was important to create a system that would be flexible for use, and to create a sense of community.”
She adds, “I definitely believe that design can be used much more as an aesthetic to deal with the problems our society faces at an everyday basis.”
Refugee settlement design model can be easily built with the help of just two people under an hour without using any electrical hardware. Two panels and a slotting system has been used to achieve this mechanism. The system has a bed and a storage space, the bed can also be converted into a chair. To enforce permanency, the attention has been paid not only for the inhabitants, but also for the security of their belongings and goods.
About the Refugee Settlement Design Project
Through this refugee settlement design project, Sanjana has tried to create a prototype, which is easily packaged and shipped. It is made from fibre glass reinforced gypsum which makes it extremely light weight, while not compromising its structural stability. It is created in such a way, that it is easily built with two people under an hour without using any electrical hardware. The system has a bed and a storage space, The bed can also be converted into a chair. When fully operational, the module starts behaving like a house with an incorporated roof. It was designed in such a way that a number of permutation in terms of arrangement are possible, to accommodate individuals to a large family.
This project for the refugee settlement was a finalist for the UN and IKEA foundation competition on refugee resettlement program.
Inspiration behind the project: The inspiration was 90 degrees furniture and through this a system that would be flexible for use, and will give a sense of community was achieved.
Process: The concept was ideated keeping in mind the needs of refugees, and their quintessential need is to get sense of permanency in a temporary situation. So, the system which was created can easily be packaged and shipped. After a lot of deliberation a system that could be combined to create a community space was devised.
Providing a sense of community: After a lot of deliberation, a system that could be combined to create a community space was devised. When fully operational, the module starts behaving like a house with an incorporated roof. It was designed in such a way that a number of permutation in terms of arrangement are possible, to accommodate individuals to a large family.
About the Designer:
Sanjana Paramhans finished her high school from Indian School Bahrain after which she pursued her BFA in Interior Designing from Pratt Institute. She was also the Co-Founder and President of SASA – South Asian Student Association at Pratt Institute and was also awarded with a red tassel at graduation, which was for extraordinary cultural and extracurricular contribution to the school. Her project on the refugee settlement was a finalist for the UN and Ikea foundation competition on refugee resettlement program.